A place where east meets west - that is Hong Kong. A former British colony, Hong Kong is a blend of various cultures - it's a city that radiates energy. There's an array of attractions to get lost in - towering skyscrapers, exotic beaches, street bazaars, and what not!
A mecca for cuisines and shopping alike, it's no wonder why many flocks to Hong Kong. It's a must-visit destination.
Yes, of course, it is - but that means there's a lot to prepare for, starting with the visa of Hong Kong.
Let's get to it, shall we?
What is the Hong Kong visa policy?
The Hong Kong visa policy lists the requirements by which a foreign citizen can enter the nation with a visa of Hong Kong. The visa of Hong Kong will depend on the nationality of the citizen.
As of now, foreign citizens from over 145 nations can enter Hong Kong without a Hong Kong visa for a period of 7 days to 180 days for activities related to tourism or certain business occasions. However, all foreign citizens must hold a passport that must be valid for at least 1 month.
For activities such as employment, study, or operation of a business, all foreign citizens will require a Hong Kong visa from the Hong Kong Immigration Department or from one of the Chinese diplomatic missions, unless they have the right to land or right of abode in Hong Kong.
A few Hong Kong free visa countries (including Macau) don't need a visa Hong Kong to enter the nation for tourism or business-related purposes. However, for business-related purposes, the foreign citizens of these Hong Kong free visa countries can undertake only a limited range of business activities. They can't study in Hong Kong or take up any employment; establishing and joining any business is also prohibited.
However, that doesn't mean that there's no chance of establishing a business in Hong Kong or investing in one nation.
That's why there's the Hong Kong Investment visa.
Why don't we get to know what a Hong Kong Investment visa is?
What is Hong Kong Investment visa?
Also known as "Entry for Investment as Entrepreneur", Hong Kong Investment visa, as the name suggests, is a visa that lets foreign citizens come to the nation for investing in business(s) in Hong Kong, or even establishing one in the nation itself.
As of now, there is no limit on the number of holders of the Hong Kong Investment visa, so it depends on your qualifications. The reason behind this visa is to strengthen the economy of Hong Kong, so it's on you how you can convince the Hong Kong authorities of the business and how it plans on adding value to their economy.
Your educational and professional background will be checked - you should showcase your proven expertise in a relevant field.
You also need to designate a sponsor (local) who will act as your guarantor. The sponsor can be a company or an individual, and they will shoulder your responsibility when you leave Hong Kong.
From the time of issuance, a Hong Kong Investment visa is valid for 2 years. The visa can be renewed, and as long as you do it the proper way, you can continue to operate your business in Hong Kong.
If you plan to renew the Hong Kong Investment visa, do so at least 4 weeks before it expires. Once approved, your period of stay will follow the same pattern of 3 years.
Say, if you have lived long enough in Hong Kong, you can apply for permanent residency status and bring your family under certain conditions. Seven consecutive years in Hong Kong is a good criterion to apply for permanent residency status.
However, there are a few criteria to be met in regards to your family members.
- Your family member(s) should include your spouse
- As for your children, they must be under 18 years of age
As for your spouse, you will need to show proof that their dependence on you is genuine and that you must be able to provide for their necessities. Your family member(s) also mustn't commit any wrongdoings during the time of registration.
The family member(s) who are dependent on you, their period of stay depends on you - that means, as long as your pass remains valid, your family member(s) are allowed to stay in Hong Kong as a legitimate citizen.
How to get Hong Kong visa (Investment)?
To get the Hong Kong visa (Investment), there are a few important criteria to fulfil:
- You should have a clean record. It means you shouldn't have any criminal record of any misconduct or wrongdoings
- Your professional achievements or academic performance have to be exemplary. If, by any chance, your graduate degrees are not up to the mark, then you can show proof of your past professional experience as an alternative
- You must convince the Hong Kong authorities that your business will promote the economy of Hong Kong
Take note that your company must be set up in advance before you apply for Investment visa.
What documents are required for Hong Kong visa (Investment)?
To apply for Hong Kong Investment visa, the following documents are a must:
- A duly filled Hong Kong visa application form
- Apart from the Hong Kong visa application form, you also need to attach a copy of the passport's personal page. A recent passport-sized photo is also required
- A copy of your valid travel document if you are staying in Hong Kong currently
- A copy of your Hong Kong ID card, if any
- A copy of proof of your academic and professional credentials
- A copy of proof of documents that supports the financial condition of your status and of your company
- A copy of your appointment letter or employment contract of the company. Documents showing proof of your designation, fringe benefits, and period of employment are included
- A detailed business plan (2-year) of your company such as its business activities, creation of local jobs, amount of investment, and so on
- If you are a resident of Taiwan, Macao SAR, or an overseas Chinese who hold a PRC passport, then a copy of proof of overseas residence is a must
As for the business plan, there are certain criteria that need to be included:
Business plan - Having a detailed business plan is the topmost priority. What's the nature of the business - it needs to be included in the business plan. Only then can you convince the Hong Kong authorities of the value that your company will bring to Hong Kong's economy.
Turnover of the business - You will need to prepare the balance sheet and the profit-and-loss account statement of the company you are the owner of in a different foreign country other than Hong Kong.
Even if you don't own any company at the time of your registration, you will still need to prepare a forecast of your awaited company's profit-and-loss account statement and balance sheet for the following 2 years.
Apart from the above, you also need to demonstrate that you have sufficient funds to finance your business; proof of capital investment is also to be included.
You are also required to propose the extent of jobs your business will provide to the local workforce.
What documents are required if the sponsor is an individual?
If your sponsor is an individual, then they need to take note of the following:
- A duly filled application form is to be made specifically for the sponsor
- A copy of his/her Hong Kong ID card
- A copy of his/her personal particulars page of their travel document (valid)
What documents are required if the sponsor is a company?
The following documents are required if your sponsor is a company:
- A duly-filled application form that is to be made specifically for the sponsor
- A copy of the Business Registration Certificate of the company.
How to apply for Hong Kong visa (Investment)?
Meet up with all of your eligible criteria, following which note you and your sponsor can gather all required documents.
If all is good to go, submit the application form to the Immigration Department of Hong Kong by post. The Hong Kong authorities will notify you within 3 to 5 months.
If your application is approved, you will get the visa. Collect it at the Hong Kong Immigration Department - if you can't do so, have it make it to you by your sponsor or an authorized representative on your behalf.
The visa will act as a license that will permit you to enter Hong Kong. As such, you need to affix on your travel document's blank page so that, when prompted, you can present it.
If, by any chance, your application is rejected, you have the option to appeal to reconsider your application.
How much is Hong Kong visa fee for Investment visa?
The Hong Kong visa fee of an Investment visa depends on the nationality of the foreign citizen. As of now, there is no fixed fee for the Hong Kong visa fee for an Investment visa.