Offshore Bank Account Hong Kong:
Hong Kong was a respected international financial center for many decades. And, in some circles, it still is.
But, as we’ve shared in other articles, Hong Kong has lost its luster.
In this article, we’ll take a closer look at whether you should open a bank account in Hong Kong as a foreigner, or if you should consider banking elsewhere instead.
Feel free to use the table of contents to jump ahead to any sections that are immediately relevant to your search.
Table of Contents
- Hong Kong Offshore Bank Account 101
- Who Should Consider Opening in Hong Kong?
- Alternatives to Opening a Hong Kong Bank Account
- Frequently Asked Questions
Hong Kong Offshore Bank Account 101
Hong Kong was an interesting offshore banking jurisdiction for decades because it blended the benefits of the “offshore world” with the transparency of the “onshore world”.
It did this by offering corporate structuring options that could lead to a zero-tax environment along with the transparency of a developed market.
That said, the transfer of ownership to China has raised concerns in recent years, specifically the crackdown on Hong Kong by Chinese authorities.
However, Hong Kong continues to act as a regional financial hub and is still seen as a transparent and business-friendly territory. Albeit, a Chinese-controlled one.
So, if you’re looking for offshore banking in Asia (or China), Hong Kong might be worth considering.
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Who Should Consider Opening in Hong Kong?
Both individuals and businesses can consider banking in Hong Kong.
On the individual level, as a non-resident, you’ll be looking at either premier or private banking, which typically requires a deposit of at least US $100,000 or currency equivalent. However, there are some exceptions.
In terms of business accounts, it’s important to point out that Hong Kong banks are surprisingly difficult to open accounts with – even if you have a Hong Kong entity.
Instead, companies that want to bank here need to provide proof of their connection to Hong Kong and their need for a banking relationship.
To be clear, simply registering a Hong Kong company is not considered a sufficient enough reason to open a Hong Kong bank account. Banks want to see that the company has economic substance and real ties to Hong Kong.
Fortunately, there are alternative banking options available for Hong Kong companies. So, if you are struggling to open accounts for your Hong Kong company, don’t hesitate to contact us to discuss the available options.
Alternatives to Opening a Hong Kong Bank Account
If you are looking to bank in Hong Kong but don’t have any ties to Hong Kong that actually require you to domicile your accounts here, it might be worth considering alternatives instead.
Fortunately, there are many alternatives to choose from…
If you were looking for a bank account in Hong Kong because you need a competent international bank to help to invest and manage your money, you might want to consider other private banking hubs. This includes banking hubs in Asia, Europe, and the Americas.
If the above sounds like you, here are a few jurisdictions you might want to consider instead of Hong Kong:
- Isle of Man
- United States
On the other hand, if you are considering Hong Kong for business banking, you may want to consider one of the following business banking jurisdictions instead.
- United Kingdom
- United States
Of course, before choosing where to open business accounts, look at where your business has the strongest ties, as this will impact your chances of opening accounts.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about opening an offshore bank account in Hong Kong.
How Much Money Do You Need to Open an Offshore Bank Account?
The deposit required to open an offshore bank account in Hong Kong varies depending on the type of account you want to open and the bank you’re considering. For example, in some instances, foreigners can open accounts in person with a few thousand dollars. However, remote opening with banks that focus on premier and private banking activities will usually require a deposit between US $200,000 and $1,000,000. However, there are some exceptions.
How Do I Legally Open an Offshore Bank Account?
Offshore banking is 100% legal. If you would like to open an offshore bank account in Hong Kong, simply follow the normal account opening procedures and submit all relevant documents. Importantly, you should confirm any reporting requirements for offshore accounts with your country of citizenship (and residency) to ensure that you are compliant at all times.
Ready to Open Accounts?
If you would like assistance navigating your account opening options and the jurisdictions that you can realistically access, we can help.
You can access GlobalBanks IQ, our international banking intelligence platform, in just a few clicks. Unlock our bank database, individual bank profiles, account opening strategies and reports, banker scripts, and more.
But, if you want a 100% personalized account opening service that taps into our team’s expertise and provides direct banker introductions, you can get started with GlobalBanks Insider.
Of course, if you have any questions before deciding which solution is best for you, don’t hesitate to contact us directly!