Simplified procedures for starting a business in China

Last year, China simplified the procedure for company registrations, expatriate work visas and annual compliance to encourage investment and commercial businesses. Let’s look at the changes that are likely to affect the way business is done in 2016.

Foreign investors may find it is easier to set up their new operations in China with simplified procedures, shortened application times and relaxed capital injection requirements.

3-in-1 business license

Companies looking to operate in China no longer need to obtain a Business Licence, Organisation Code Certificate and Tax Registration Certificate from three different authorities. They now only need to submit one set of documents to the Administration for Industry and Commerce (AIC) for a three-in-one business license. This shortens the application process and is also more convenient.

Annual return filing

The annual inspection for inbound investments by the AIC has also been changed to an annual return filing.

Foreign exchange registration

The State Administration of Foreign Exchange (SAFE) has delegated local banks the authority to review foreign exchange registrations for inbound direct investments by foreign investors with effect on 1 June 2015.

Under the guidance of the SAFE, banks that have obtained the financial institution identification codes can now handle direct investment-related foreign exchange registration and other relevant businesses. They can also fulfil duties such as examination, statistics, monitoring and record-filing within the scope of their authority.

Expatriate work permits

While foreign investors can enjoy simpler procedures when setting up new operations in China, there are also changes to work permit applications.

  • Expatriates can now apply for a five-year residence permit or a Green Card.
  • Foreigners from certain nationalities can apply for a Z Visa (Z landing visa) upon approval at Pudong Airport, as opposed to in their home country.
  • Residence Permits have been cancelled for Hong Kong and Taiwan expatriates.

China’s continuous economic restructures have created more opportunities for private capital and other financial industry.

TMF China provides solutions for corporations entering the country for the first time. From general services including incorporation, annual statutory compliance activities and changes of legal documents, to:

  • Step-by-step guidance from searching for an office location to opening a bank account.
  • Acting as contact person with related government authorities.
  • Assisting on expatriate visa applications, such as a five-year residence permit.
  • Setting up accounting and finance functions in accordance with local requirements.

Need more information? Get in touch with our experts in China.

Keeping up to date

You can now receive our insights and regulatory updates direct to your inbox by choosing the topics and jurisdictions that most interest you. 

Subscribe to our e-Alerts.