Representative Office

Thursday, 26 July 2012 13:43

Basic information regarding the setting up of a Representative Office (RO) in Shanghai:

  •  RO is not qualified as legal person
  • Parent Company should already operate at least 2 years
  • There is one RO establishment in each city
  • Representatives: According to the requirements representatives are limited to 4 people: One Chief Representative and 3 ordinary  Representatives ( Chinese employees are not limited). RO can not directly hire Chinese employees. It should be done through  local  HR Company


Types of RO:

  • Representative Office of Enterprise
  • Representative Office of Chamber of Commerce
  • Representative Office of Governmental Organization

It is not permitted to establish RO for the following industries:

Banking, insurance, marine, air transport, shipping agents.


Chinese name of the representative office

`Hong Kong` + `full name of the parent company` + Shanghai + Representative Office.


Registered address

The registered address of a representative office must be in an office building approved by Shanghai authority. (please let us check in advance)


Business Scope

Representative office is only allowed to conduct the non-profit business activities for its parent company.



Representative offices are subject to a consolidated tax based on their total expenses. The tax rate is around 11%. If parent company is non-profit organization (government organization) it can enjoy exemption of taxes.


Time estimate for the setting up of a representative office in Shanghai

Issue of the registration certificate: 10 working days from the date of submission of all the application documents to the Shanghai Administration for Industry and Commerce (“SAIC”)

Post-registration formalities (including Rep. Office Code, foreign exchange, bank, tax): 30 -35 working days

Note: The above time estimate does not include the time necessary for the preparation and signature of the application documents.

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Mr. Mike Chang



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