A new inspection regime for personal information on the Companies Register has been carried out in August 2021 by the Companies Registry. The full residential address and ID number of directors (the “Information”) of Hong Kong limited companies are no longer accessible to the public. The full implementation is divided into three phases, as in the first phase, companies are now allowed and encouraged to replace theirs with correspondence addresses and partial ID numbers for public inspection. To give you a better understanding, the following article has summarised the takeaways of the regime.


Since the Companies Ordinance (Cap. 622) was passed in 2012, some raised concerns regarding the Register containing personal information like the usual residential address (“URAs”) and full identification number (“IDNs”) of the companies’ directors are available for public inspection.

Therefore the new inspection regime is designed to provide protection to company directors, company secretaries and other relevant individuals, where URAs will be replaced by correspondence address and partial IDNs. And the Information would only be accessible for “specified people” upon application.


a) Phase 1 (already implemented in August 2021)

Companies could replace their URAs and IDNs with correspondence addresses and partial ID numbers for public inspection.

b) Phase 2 (from 24 October 2022)

Full personal information (“ Protected Information”) on the Register will be replaced by correspondence addresses and partial IDNs for public inspection. Only ‘specified persons’ will be permitted to apply to the Registry for access to ‘Protected Information’ of directors and other persons.

c) Phase 3 (from 27 December 2023)

Data subjects could apply to the Registry for protecting from public inspection their Protected Information contained in documents registered with the Registry (“Withheld Information”), and replace such information with their correspondence addresses and partial IDNs. “Specified persons” could apply to the Registry for access to Withheld Information of directors and other persons,


What can you do?


It is up to you to choose whether to change your URAs to a correspondence address or not, but we truly recommend those who value their privacy to take immediate action. For Bridges’ existing clients who are affected by the revised regime mentioned above, our company secretary team has already reached out and proposed actions. If you are not using Bridges’ service, yet are interested in knowing more about how to protect your privacy and personal data promptly, please reach us by calling +852 2159 9666 or emailing info@bridges.hk.


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Hong Kong’s finance chief, Paul Chan delivered the 2022-23 Budget on 23 February. With a worsening COVID-19 outbreak rapidly taking over the city, the HK Government will roll out an anti-pandemic fund totalling HK$64 billion with another HK$20 billion to support residents and businesses hammered by a worsening public health crisis.

The latest Budget focuses heavily on relieving people’s hardship, supporting enterprises and enhancing economic resiliency. The following are the highlights of the Budget the BRIDGES team has chosen which are of the biggest interests of yours:

Supporting the Enterprises

Ease the operating pressure of businesses, enhance the cash flow support and safeguard jobs with:

• Reducing profits tax for the year of assessment 2021-22 by 100%, subject to a ceiling of HK$10,000

• Providing a rates concession for non-domestic properties for four quarters of 2022 23, subject to a ceiling of HK$5,000 per quarter in the first two quarters and a ceiling of HK$2,000 per quarter in the remaining two quarters for each rateable property

• Waiving the business registration fees for 2022-23, and extending the waivers/concessions of the existing 34 groups of government fees for 12 months

• Continuing to waive 75% of water and sewage charges payable by non-domestic households, subject to a monthly ceiling of HK$20,000 and HK$12,500 respectively per household

• Continuing to grant the 75% rental or fee concession currently applicable to eligible tenants of government premises and eligible short-term tenancies

• The Special 100% Loan Guarantee under the SFGS will increase the maximum loan amount per enterprise from the total amount of employee wages and rents to 27 months with the loan ceiling raised to HK$9mn, and extend the maximum repayment period to 10 years

• To help small and medium sized exporters secure export financing from banks, the Hong Kong Export Credit Insurance Corporation (ECIC) will launch the Export Credit Guarantee Programme, which will guarantee up to a maximum limit of $50 million of the export financing for their policyholders. In addition, to encourage exporters to take larger orders from overseas buyers, the ECIC will introduce the "Flexible Indemnity Ratio" arrangement later this year to enhance insurance coverage for exporters

Relieving People’s Hardship

With some of the one-off measures to provide support for members of the public who are affected by the epidemic:

• Reducing salaries tax and tax under personal assessment for the year of assessment 2021-22 by 100%, subject to a ceiling of HK$10,000

• Providing a rates concession for domestic properties for four quarters of 2022-23, subject to a ceiling of HK$1,500 per quarter in the first two quarters and a ceiling of HK$1,000 per quarter in the remaining two quarters for each rateable property

• Granting each eligible residential electricity account a subsidy of HK$1,000. This measure will involve an expenditure of about HK$2.8bn and benefit around 2.8mn residential households

• A round of consumption vouchers valued at HK$10,000 will be disbursed to each HK permanent resident and new arrivals aged 18 or above. The first round will start around April

• The 100% Personal Loan Guarantee Scheme will extend until the end of April next year. The maximum loan ceiling will increase to HK$100,000. In addition, the maximum repayment period will extend to 10 years

Wrap up

As businesses and the economy in HK are set to face a turbulent first half of the year, these measures might soothe the difficult period. “I forecast that HK’s economy will put up a better performance in the second half of this year and achieve growth of 2.0-3.5 per cent in real terms for the year as a whole,” said Chan.

If you have questions regarding how the Budget will affect your business operation or tax issues, please feel free to contact us by emailing info@bridges.hk or calling +852 2159 9666 to chat with our professional team.

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Many business owners must have heard about the infamously arduous bank account opening process in HK and we often encounter foreign entrepreneur clients stressing about it. With all the travel restrictions, it seems to make opening a corporate bank account even trickier since many business owners cannot be present. However, our team has helped almost 20 business owners of different nationalities to open an account remotely successfully in the first half of 2022!

Here comes how our team can make the entire journey much more efficient even if the client is not in HK with practical advice and initiatives.

It is no secret that the bank account regulations of international banks are tightening over time to prevent illegal operations, that is when our in-house compliance team and experienced advisor come in handy. Our local experts will always provide detailed guidance and solutions for clients to adapt the regulations, making the success rate naturally higher.


Why Having a Consultant is Important?

Our competent consultant does not stop at telling you what documents are needed beforehand, s/he will also review your documents and provide practical suggestions to facilitate your application. Based on each client's background and needs (i.e. business nature, passport country, residence country, buyer & supplier background, etc.), our consultant will suggest the most suitable bank(s) for your business as some banks fit some business natures better, or how to enhance your prepared documents to fit the banks’ particular requirements.

After the official documents are submitted and the appointment with bankers is confirmed, the consultant will then notify you so you can meet with the banks virtually or physically (banks like HSBC and OCBC now offer virtual meetings to cater to applicants who can't do it in person due to travel restrictions), and pick up the registered company materials such as business registration certificate (which can also be done by our team). In short, our team will do our very best to step in at the right time and set things up in the most efficient way.


How We Can Make a Difference?

Many clients are extremely concerned if they could open a bank account remotely due to travel restrictions and questions about the success rate, you can see how we will help at different start-up stages in the following. 

  • ​Company incorporation stage: After receiving your company details and ID proofs, our consultants will prepare a set of registration documents for you to sign online and then we'll submit them to the relevant Government departments. Most importantly, you do NOT have to be in HK and everything is done digitally.
  • Bank account opening stage: To save your hassles, our team will manage the appointments with your preferred banks. Some of our bank partners can even offer pre-screening to let you know whether your provided documents are sufficient for the bank appointment / assessment. 

We fully understand that each client’s case background is different and some banks could be more suitable for certain businesses. For instance, some banks might require all Director(s) and Shareholder(s) to be present at the meeting, whilst some banks only need half of them to show up. Read this if you are interested to know more about the requirements of each of our bank partners.


If you want to have more information or need any assistance in opening a bank account, don't hesitate to shoot us an email at info@bridges.hk or call us at +852 2159 9666 and enjoy your exciting business journey with us. 

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