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Acres of Success – Set Up an Agricultural Business
Get down into the grassroots of business with 3E Accounting’s guide on how to set up an agricultural business in Hong Kong.
Hong Kong (HK) is renowned for many things, including being an international hub for trade and commerce. It is a globally cosmopolitan city that is the perfect melting pot of East meets West. It might seem far-fetched, but you can set up an agricultural business in Hong Kong and reap in the rewards.
Agriculture in HK is seen as a sunset industry or an industry in decline. It is not something readily associated with land-scarce HK, yet it is nevertheless an essential one. The government has been actively promoting investment in this sector since its 2016 New Agriculture Policy (NAP). There have also been tremendous inroads to modernise the industry and promote more sustainable and organic farming techniques.
In the Business of Agriculture
Most agricultural, farming and fishery activities are concentrated around the Special Administrative Region which includes the urban outskirts and New Territories. Agricultural techniques include what is termed urban and peri-urban methods, which defined the areas used for such activities.
Due to the scarcity of available land, high yield produce is given preference over mass or large quantity production. The techniques also target leaner logistics to lessen food wastage while increasing employment opportunities.
Agriculture in HK is under the governance of the Hong Kong Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department (AFCD). It includes commodities such as organic and non-organic vegetables, flowers, poultry and pig farming as well as fisheries. The AFCD has particular guidelines, regulations and licenses that must be followed and applied for. The first step, however, is to incorporate your company.
This is done with the HK company registry, and the following legal structures can be incorporated:
- Sole Proprietorship or Partnership
- Private Limited Company
- Company Limited by Shares or Guarantee
Of these, the Private Limited Company or PLC is the most viable option. Having a legal entity status offers greater protection and limited liability to shareholders. Next is to set up a corporate bank account and register for taxes. HK also has double tax treaties with neighbouring China. This will benefit any agricultural business with import-export activities as they can apply for double tax exemptions.
Regulations differ for plant-based agricultural activities and livestock or fisheries-based ones. Special rules and permits apply for hygiene, waste and pollution, storage and transport. Some varieties of permits which can be applied for from the AFCD include:
- Livestock Keeping License (LKL)
- Marine Fish Culture License (MFCL)
- Dairy License
- Pesticide Permit
A Fruitful Business
Investing in HK’s agricultural sector is a sustainable, long-term plan toward personal and economic success. Teaming up with business specialists such as 3E Accounting will ensure a smooth start to your venture. You can focus on the pleasures of farming and running your business while 3E Accounting takes care of all the preliminaries. With the right professionals at your side, its an easy matter to set up an agricultural business in Hong Kong.
Contact 3E Accounting today to plant the first seeds of business success.