Opening a business account in Hong Kong

Alice Wong
4 minutes
Business tips
Opening a business account in Hong Kong
In this article

As a growing business, opening an official corporate bank account is the first step to putting your company on a clear growth trajectory. But choosing the right account for your business can be a challenge: there are many banks out there, and each account offering is different.

However, the process to open a corporate bank account in Hong Kong is reasonably similar, whichever bank you choose. So we’ve outlined the process for you, allowing you to see everything required to open your business account in Hong Kong.

What documentation you’ll need to open a business bank account in Hong Kong

There are a number of key documents you’ll need when opening a corporate bank account in Hong Kong. These include:

  • Proof of personal identity. This can be documents like your passport, Hong Kong ID, or your business Director’s ID.

  • Declaration from one or more directors providing the personal details for all directors and principal shareholders.

  • A document showing proof of business address, such as a property licence or bank statement.

  • Evidence of a board resolution that approves the opening of your business bank account.

  • Key business information. These are the important documents, and you must supply a certified true copy of:

    • Business Registration Certificate, issued by Inland Revenue Department;

    • Certificate of Incorporation, issued by the Companies Registry; and

    • Your business’ Articles of Association.

  • A list of specimen signatures for all authorised signatories.

    Proof of business. Documents to prove your business is operational, such as contracts, supplier invoices, a detailed business plan, or audited financial statements.

  • Corporate shareholders must supply a certified copy of the organisation chart, showing the beneficial owners of the company, and percentage held by each shareholder.

  • Details of any ultimate beneficial owners for company nominee shareholders.

  • If any of the company’s beneficiaries are a trust, a certified copy of the trust deed must be supplied, including details of all trustees, settlers, and beneficiaries.

As you can see, there’s a lot that’s required. But getting this all ready ahead of time will make the process of opening your corporate bank account much easier.

How to open a business bank account in Hong Kong

Step 1. Compile the necessary documentation.

Step 2. Attend an initial face-to-face appointment with your chosen bank. This initial appointment is effectively an interview to ensure your business is legitimate, where you submit your documentation. This allows the bank to understand the nature of your business, and to ensure you’ll be a good fit as a client.

Step 3. The bank then reviews your application and provides you with preliminary approval.

Step 4. You’ll attend a meeting with the bank again to sign all the necessary business banking documents, and pay the initial deposit to open the account.

Step 5. All associated documentation will then be reviewed by the appropriate departments.

Step 6. Once this is all approved, the bank will notify you that your business account is open.

How long does the process take?

While the steps may seem straightforward, the process to open a business bank account in Hong Kong can take anywhere from four to eight weeks. It all depends on the bank you choose, and how efficient their processes are.

Bank fees to be aware of

Along with the convoluted paperwork required, it’s important to be aware of the fees involved with opening a business bank account in Hong Kong. While each bank will have its own set of fees, the common ones you can expect to pay are:

  • Appointment meeting fee. Watch out for this one, as some banks are known to charge an appointment meeting fee ranging between HK$1,200 - HK$1,350.

  • Account setup fee. Depending on the bank you choose, there can be a fee just to set up the account. This ranges from HK$100 - HK$150.

  • Initial deposit. Expect to pay anywhere from HK$5,000 - HK$50,000 as an initial deposit.

  • Minimum balance. As a bare minimum, your account is required to keep a minimum balance. that can range from HK$5,000 - HK$50,000. If your balance falls below this, you can expect to pay a fee of HK$150 - HK$200. 

  • Processing fee. While some banks do waive this fee, others won’t. So be prepared to pay a processing fee anywhere up to HK$10,000.

  • Foreign transfer fee. Sending currency internationally can get expensive, with foreign transfer fees ranging up to HK$120.

Drawbacks to opening a business bank account in Hong Kong

As you can see, while it’s a crucial part of your business, opening a business bank account in Hong Kong can be time-consuming. There’s a high level of due diligence to be completed, and business owners are required to visit the nominated bank in person to fill in physical application forms. 

Once the process has started, it can often take a long time to receive approval to open a corporate bank account in Hong Kong. You’ll also be required to pay a range of different fees, just to hold your money with that bank.

Still looking to open a business bank account in Hong Kong? There’s a better way

Opening a business bank account in Hong Kong can be a convoluted process. There are many hoops to jump through, and it’s not a quick process.

Luckily, Airwallex is here to make it easy to open a foreign currency account in Hong Kong.

You can open an Airwallex Business Account within minutes. You don’t need to visit a bank in person, and no prior appointment booking is needed — it’s all done online, and you can get started immediately.

You’re not tied down to your own location, either. As well as Hong Kong, you can set up a Global Account in the US, EU, UK, Japan, and Australia. This allows you to receive funds locally and internationally, make global payouts in 31 currencies to 130+ destinations, and convert currency at market-leading FX rates.

There are no initial deposits, no setup fees, no average monthly balance required, and no monthly fees.

We’ve made it as easy as possible to get your business’ bank account up and running — faster. Create your free Global Account today, and avoid the bank headaches altogether.

Related article: What is the SWIFT Payment Network?

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Alice Wong
Growth Marketing Lead

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