Our lawyers in China provide a wide range of legal services for foreign entrepreneurs interested in doing business in one of the major economies in the world that offers important business opportunities. The foreign investors can benefit from professional services and assistance before starting a business in Chinaand after the beginning of their economic activity. Our attorneys in China can assist in various legal fields, such as business law, tax planning, insolvency, liquidation of companies, consulting etc.
Tannet Group Limited provides business services since 1999 and proudly offered extensive support and certified advice to more than 60,000 clients from approximately 130 countries worldwide. Concentrated on reciprocal advantages, the business advisors at Tannet Group Limited successfully developed a business system comprising full business solutions, operation, incubation, capital investment, and methodical management. The assistance offered by Tannet Group Limited is provided at an international scale, with the mention that the business specialists offered in-depth support for thousands of investors and business persons from countries like Japan, Indonesia, France, Canada, Thailand, USA, South Korea, Australia, Liechtenstein, India and Malaysia.
Even if there are certain restrictions for foreign citizens who want to invest in China, there are also multiple economy sectors that offer important business opportunities. If you need to enter the Chinese market and expand your business or start a new company, you may contact our lawyer in China in order to find out if your business plan can be implemented the way you want. In this country, there are nearly 100 economic sectors where the authorities impose certain restrictions on foreigners. Our attorneys in China can guide you through the local regulations and help you start your business according to the present local laws.
The Chinese authorities continue with the economic reforms with the goal of attracting more foreign investments. A foreign investor who wants to benefit from these reforms and open a business in this country may contact our Chinese lawyers for further information.
Litigation in China
If you have a litigation in China and you need a local lawyer to represent you in front of the court, you may contact our Chinese law firm. Our lawyers are authorized to plead in any court, where the litigation is – the Supreme Court, appeal courts or courts of the first instance. You may also need a Chinese lawyer when you are facing a debt collection and you need to recover your money from your business partners. Our Chinese attorneys will help you be informed of the whole procedure and take the legal steps for debt recovery, starting with the demand letter to the representation in front of a local court.
After a case has been judged, it is enforced by the enforcement agency or by the Court of First Instance. There is a time limit for enforcing an effective judgement, usually, two years after the date the judgment enters into force. Judgements made by foreign courts cannot be directly enforced in China. Foreign courts can apply for recognition and this is done based on existing international agreements with the People’s Republic of China. The recognition and enforcement will usually be judged according to the principle of reciprocity: if a preceding similar case existed in the past and it allowed for the enforcement of the judgments between China and the said foreign country.
Because court litigation is somewhat more complicated in China and it is often hindered by the language barrier, many investors in China will choose to solve their commercial or business disputes using arbitration. The Civil Procedure Law of the People’s Republic of China recognizes this alternative dispute resolution method although similar conditions apply for foreign judgments: the foreign country issuing the arbitration judgment must be part of an existing convention with China. A Chinese arbitration commission handles the arbitration procedure and it is governed by the Arbitration Law.
The court structure in China
The division of the court system in China is set forth in the Constitution of the People’s Republic of China and the Organic Law of the People’s Courts. The four-level court system contains:
-the Supreme People’s Court supervises the administration of justice by all other courts and it is the court of last resort;
-the local people’s courts or the courts of the first instance handle criminal and civil cases and they are located at a provincial level, in autonomous regions, and in special municipalities; the intermediate people’s courts are located at the prefectures, autonomous prefectures, and municipality levels;
-the courts of special jurisdiction are the Military Court of China, the Railway Transport Court of China and the Maritime Court of China.
Operating parallel to the courts in China, there are the people’s procurators. They are defined by law as state organs for legal supervision. The Supreme People’s Procuratorate is the highest prosecutorial agency in China. Procuratorates investigate cases in order to determine if a suspect should be arrested or not. They have an important role in the public prosecution and oversee other legal activities.
Our attorneys in China can help you if you want to take legal action regarding a certain matter and you are unsure what court to address. We can also help you with legal representation.
Assistance in debt collection provided by our lawyer in China
If partners or companies in China can no longer pay the debts as stipulated by documents in this sense, then a debt collection is suggested. Our Chinese attorneys are at your disposal with complete legal support when the debt recovery procedure is initiated. The negotiation process and the verification of the debts can be made by our team of lawyers.
Open a company in China
A foreign investor who wants to set up a company in China needs a few details before registering his company – he may be interested in what type of company suits best to his business, the procedure for incorporation, the documents required by the Chinese authorities etc. Our law firm in China can offer all these details and help the foreign citizen register companies without traveling to China. For accounting services, rules for hiring employees, virtual office and other additional services, the foreign entrepreneur may contact our Chinese lawyers.The most common type of business chosen by foreign entrepreneurs in China is the wholly foreign-owned enterprise (WFOE). Other types of companies are presented by our lawyer in China, who can help you with company incorporation procedures:
partnership enterprise for foreign investors who want to open small businesses;
representative office to test and verify the market without trading activities;
joint ventures for professional and experienced business persons in China;
Hong-Kong company under certain conditions which can be explained by our advisors.
Features of the Trade Register in China
The Trade Register is the company registration authority within the State Administration of Industry and Commerce (SAIC) or its local counterparts (AICs). Its main responsibility is to undertake the registration procedures for establishing a Chinese company. Any businessman who wants to open a company in China has to file a name pre-approval application with the Trade Register.
If the chosen name is identical to the one of an existing company registered in the same industry, the Trade Register will reject the proposal. Since 2016 a Guiding Opinion on Opening-up Enterprise Name Database and Promoting the Reform of Enterprise Registration (Guiding Opinion) was issued by the SAIC. The company name database is now open to the public.
The Guiding Opinion contains seven categories of company names, among which the names of existing companies, previous names of enterprises which have changed their name within the previous year, company names submitted for approval, but not approved yet, and so on. This Guiding Opinion is aimed at simplifying the verification of a Chinese company. Business registration in China is done at a regional level by the local Administration for Industry and Commerce. The Chinese Trade Register has a centralized system for checking business registration, but it is available only in Chinese. Therefore, it is highly recommended to rely on the professional services of a Chinese law firm if you want to register a company.
How to register a company with the Trade Register in China
Company registration is a necessary step for every investor who wants to start up a company and do business in China. Several stages need to be completed before registering a company in China. These include the following:
• Name search and reservation – prepare three or four company names (in Chinese) and submit them with the local industry and commerce administration bureau. They will confirm the name availability and reserve it for your business. The reservation is valid for six months, with the possibility of extension. The name search and reservation takes one working day to complete;
• Examination and approval – after the company name is reserved, you need to obtain the approval of the investment project from the Shanghai Municipal Commission of Commerce. A series of documents need to be submitted in order to acquire this approval. A maximum amount of 30 working days are necessary for completing this step;
• Registration for business license – once the approval certificate is issued, you need to register your business with the Administration for Industry and Commerce. This usually takes 15 working days to complete.
Company registration in China requires the payment of several fees such as: official registration fees, translation and legalization fees. Depending on the type of business you want to register, these fees may vary. We kindly invite you to contact our attorneys in China if you need further information about the company registration fees.
We invite you to watch a short video about how to set up a company, helped by our lawyer in China:
When dealing with such a different economic environment like China, a foreign investor must be aware of the taxation system and the legal methods for minimizing the taxes a company has to pay. Our lawyers in China can assist with tax issues and may offer you information about financial matters that may bother you especially at the beginning of your economic activity.
What is a WFOE in China?
The limited liability company in China is the wholly foreign-owned enterprise or simply the WFOE which can be established by foreign investors with the help of our lawyers in China. As soon as the types of activities are settled, a name verification is made with the Administration of Industry and Commerce in China, the institution that validates the companies in this matter. A WFOE in China is the most popular business structure that has an easy incorporation and which can be registered in the free trade zones for no minimum share capital.
Can I open a representative office in China?
Yes, foreigners can set up representative offices in China and develop their operations in this manner with the help of our lawyers in China. A representative office in China or simply RO cannot trade or conduct business activities, but it is subject to the following activities:
an RO allows foreign investors from abroad to analyze and familiarize with the Chinese market;
foreigners can perform numerous market research activities to know well how business is done in China;
entrepreneurs can form and develop new businesses with Chinese partners or collaborators;
business persons can negotiate contracts and sign on behalf of the foreign company.
How can I buy a property in China?
Foreigners looking to buy a property in China should know that such purchase is subject to a preliminary contract comprising information about the owners, the price and the history of the accommodation, apartment, etc. It is good to know that foreign citizens can acquire only one property in China, as the main condition, and if they have lived for at least one year in this country. Moreover, a property in China cannot be purchased for renting purposes, but for other legal conditions, we invite you to get in touch with our advisors and find our extra information.
The use of the power of attorney in China
Business owners in China can issue a power of attorney for their company representatives in order for them to handle specific activities in the company. Such an important document must offer comprehensive information about the responsibilities of the person for which the power of attorney has been issued. In most cases, the power of attorney is solicited for tax payments, leasing matters, management interests and many more. Performing different activities in a firm might be subject to a power of attorney and legal representation. Please feel free to talk to us about the requirements for obtaining the power of attorney.
Business consulting in China
Looking to incorporate a business in China as a foreign investor? You might want to find out information about the business climate, the conditions involved and the ways in which you can thrive in this country. In this direction, a foreign entrepreneur in China can ask us about how the company incorporation is made in China, the management of the firm plus legal assistance for the board of directors. Legal counseling and representation in front of the Chinese authorities are mandatory for foreign investors who are not accustomed to the business etiquette in China and the regulations related to a company formation. As it is known, doing business in Asia might be subject to other obligations and requirements compared to the ones imposed in Europe, Africa or America. If you would like to be safe from an investment point of view, we suggest you address your inquiries to our team of attorneys in China and find out what are the legal services we can provide for your business.
Liquidate a company in China
For the liquidation of a company in China, a foreign investor must follow a few steps and conform to the local legislation. Our lawyers in China will help you with the legal procedures and you can rely on their advice if you want to be sure that you won’t have any problems in the future due to the legal aspect of closing your company. No matter the type of liquidation you choose for your firm, our attorneys in China will follow the legal regulations and will also help you in case of insolvency or bankruptcy.
Why invest in China?
China has a developing economy and foreign investment is very important for a country that wants to establish itself as one of the leading global markets. The current economic growth rate of the country is impressive and China will become extremely important and even reference market in the years to come. Its potential relies not only on its workforce but also on its extensive transportation network, its proximity to other Asian markets and to Hong Kong, an important economic center and most importantly, on its own large internal market.
The most attractive investment sectors include manufacturing, real estate, business services, retail trade, ICT and software, agriculture, forestry, and others. The United States remains one of the most important export partners, but China is an important supplier of various goods to the entire world. Foreign direct investment in China in the last several years has been dynamic and while some business sectors remain top investment areas, others are targeted for better development. Key sectors which are being targeted for receiving more foreign direct investments include the energy and healthcare sector and also infrastructure (including urbanization).
Frequently asked questions
1.How can you open a business in China?
China encourages foreign investments and entrepreneurs can open a business here. However, it is recommended to request the services of a professional based in China who can assist you throughout the procedure.
2.What are the basic legal requirements for foreign investors in China?