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Regulatory News

1. HKSAR Government Low-income Working Family Allowance (LIFA) Scheme
 

The Government launched the Low-income Working Family Allowance (LIFA) Scheme in May 2016, which supports the low-income working families, particularly those with children, with a view to encouraging employment and self-reliance, as well as easing inter-generational poverty. For details, please visit:
http://www.wfsfaa.gov.hk/wfao/

   
2. The Financial Services Development Council (FSDC) releases report on promoting Hong Kong as preferred financial origination and trading centre
 

The Financial Services Development Council (FSDC) released a report entitled "A Paper on Tax Issues Affecting Hong Kong to Become a Preferred Location for Regional and International Financial Institutions to Originate and Trade International Financial Products" on 29 December 2016. For details and full report, please visit:
http://www.fsdc.org.hk

   
Business to Business
   
1. UN General Assembly grants Observer Status to International Chamber of Commerce in historic decision
  For details, please click here
   
2. ICC Commission Report: Financial Institutions and International Arbitration
  This one-of-a-kind interdisciplinary Report addresses the potential benefits of international commercial arbitration in banking and financial matters and some common misperceptions about the process. For more information, please visit:
http://www.iccwbo.org/Advocacy-Codes-and-Rules/Document-centre/2016/Financial-Institutions-and-International-Arbitration-ICC-Arbitration-ADR-Commission-Report/
   
3. Global Pound Conference (GPC) - 23 February 2017
  For details, please visit:
http://hongkong2017.globalpoundconference.org/panellists-(3)/register-here#.WIW8zlN97IU
   
4. Hong Kong Anti-Corruption Forum by Asian Legal Business - 23 March 2017
  For details, please visit:
http://www.legalbusinessonline.com/conferences/hk-anticorruption-2017
   
5. 1st ICC EUROPEAN Conference on International Arbitration, Paris - 24 April 2017
  For details, please visit:
http://www.iccwbo.org/ICCEUROPEAN/
   
Public Policy Dialogue
   
 
The ICC-HK regularly provides views and comments on different public policy issues.
   
  Power and Business
 
Electricity in Hong Kong is supplied and distributed by two private power companies under the government’s scheme of control. Looking ahead, the Administration has invited views from the community particularly on future fuel mix, supply and demand, competition and continuation of the scheme of control. Given the importance of electricity supply to business and to livelihood, and the impact on the economy of any policy change, ICC-HK has offered comments on the Administration’s consultation papers.
   
  Taxation and Business
 
The simple, territorial-based tax regime of Hong Kong is an attractive part of Hong Kong’s business environment. At the same time, the government has been working to sign double taxation agreements (CDTA) with overseas tax jurisdictions, although in some instances, tax information exchange agreements (TIEA) are entered into. In recent years there is overseas pressure to set up a government-to-government mechanism for automatic exchange of financial account information in tax matters. All these carry business implications, and ICC-HK has continuously offered our views.
   
  Strengthening Hong Kong as a Leading Global International Financial Centre
 
Hong Kong is one of the largest financial centres in the world. Its external trade, low tax policies, the rule of law, free market principles and free flow of information are the main factors to its success. Nonetheless, Hong Kong faces new challenges arising from both evolving global macroeconomic forces and emerging local threats. To continue ICC-HK’s mission of projecting Hong Kong’s business interests, ICC-HK has deliberated the Paper on this subject by the government’s Financial Services Development Council.
   
  Towards Hong Kong - a Leading Global International Financial Centre
 
The Government’s Financial Services Development Council some time ago produced a report on “Strengthening Hong Kong as a Leading Global International Financial Centre”. While ICC-HK has offered comments on the Report, it was reported about 2 months ago that according to the research institute Z/Yen Group, Hong Kong was replaced in 2015 by Singapore to become the fourth global financial centre. It may be timely to rethink Hong Kong’s strategy in the context of the Report and ICC-HK’s views.
   
  Legal and Regulatory Framework for Open-ended Investment Companies in Hong Kong
 
The Financial Services Development Council has published a paper to consult on the proposal to introduce a new open-ended fund company structure to expand Hong Kong’s legal structure for investment fund vehicles. ICC-HK welcomes the initiative and has provided comments for further promoting the overall asset management business.
   
  Response to the Public Engagement Exercise on Development of Trade Single Window in Hong Kong
 
Trade is the lifeblood of the Hong Kong economy. To uphold Hong Kong’s competitiveness and position as a logistics hub, the Government is planning to set up a Trade Single Window as a single information technology (IT) platform for the one-stop lodging of all trade documents from the trading community to the Government to facilitate trade movement and customs clearance. The plan was announced by the Financial Secretary in his 2016-17 Budget Speech.


 

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