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Your Questions Answered

Does Choosing Not to Pay Yourself a Salary Mean It’s OK to Run a Business in Hong Kong Without Getting an Investment Visa First?

September 6th, 2017

Posted in Investment Visas, The Hong Kong Visa Geeza, Your Question Answered /


There appears to be a misconception among foreign nationals that you can be living here and it be OK to run a business in Hong Kong without getting an investment visa just so long as you don’t pay yourself a salary…



I currently hold a working visa which is still valid for almost 2 more years.

My contract has now been terminated and I would like to set up a limited liability company in order to do some freelance work.

Can I set up the company and send invoices to my customer even if I am on the old visa?

I do not need to pay myself salary at the moment, so can I wait to apply for a new visa until then?

So I would not be working for my company but my company would already get money without having an employee.

Thanks for your feedback

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The Hong Kong Visa Geeza (a.k.a Stephen Barnes) is a co-founder of the Hong Kong Visa Centre and author of the Hong Kong Visa Handbook. A law graduate of the London School of Economics, Stephen has been practicing Hong Kong immigration since 1993 and is widely acknowledged as the leading authority on business immigration matters here for the last 24 years.

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