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Everyone knows that it has become extremely difficult for SMEs to open and keep a bank account in Hong Kong.
Let’s see why, and what can be done about it.
Why are big banks closing so many accounts?
It is simple: over the last few years, most countries have increased their efforts to fight money laundering, terrorism, and tax evasion.
They realized that banks were not doing enough and imposed stricter obligations on them.
This led to many of the big banks being imposed huge fines and sometimes be at risk of losing their licenses.
Facing a lot of pressure, the banks had no choice but to apply much stricter standards and invest massively in compliance resources.
Of course, this resulted in additional operating costs for the banks: opening and maintaining a client bank account now costs a bank much more than 5 or 10 years ago.
One of our contacts at a big bank recently told us that the cost of compliance on any client now easily exceeds USD 1,000 per year.
Bank, therefore, turned their bank to clients who are not profitable for them. This includes:
- SMEs that do very few transactions each month, and on which the bank makes virtually no money
- Companies regarded as “complex”, meaning companies that require additional compliance work for the banks. For example, this is the case when the directors or shareholders of a Hong Kong company reside overseas or if the business is spread across several jurisdictions.
These clients are just not profitable enough for the banks.
The banks, therefore, use the excuse of their “limited risk appetite” to get rid of them.
How to easily open a business account for my company?
Some alternative to traditional banks has appeared over the last few years, with the rise of “neobanks” or “challenger banks”.
There are many of them in Europe and a growing number in Hong Kong.
One of them there is called Statrys.
If you are an SME with international business, Statrys allows to open a multicurrency business account for your company in 2 days, all online with no need to travel to Hong Kong.
Your Statrys account allows you to make and receive payments in many many countries and enjoy very attractive foreign exchanges rates.
Through our partnership with Statrys, we can guarantee that if you create your company with Air Corporate or if you appoint Air Corporate as your company secretary, you will obtain a Statrys multi-currency account for your company within 48 hours, all online. Guaranteed!
We will publish another video soon about our partnership with Statrys and how we can guarantee the opening of your Statrys account.
In the meantime, feel free to contact us if you are struggling with bank account problems.
And as usual, please subscribe to our channel for more tips about running your company in HK. Until next time, stay tuned.
Looking to register your company in Hong Kong? Register with Air Corporate today and get a free business kit to get you started.
Already have a company but need a business account? Check out our partner Statrys. Get 11 currencies in 48 hours, completely online.
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