Thursday, 22 November 2012

Hong Kong Updates- Stamp Duty

Stamp Duty
The big news in October, at least for Hong Kong residents, was the increase in Buyer’s Stamp Duty (BSD) for non-Hong Kong Permanent Residents, designed to reduce distortions (or to introduce one, depending on your point of view) in the Hong Kong property market and to ease the pressure on the price of accommodation for permanent residents. The BSD is 15% of the price (or value, whichever is higher) and, unlike the existing stamp duty, payable jointly and severally by buyer and seller, is payable by the buyer only.
A number of questions have come up about ways to avoid the BSD, but the government’s immediate response to one such suggestion – to move a property to a subsidiary and for the shares in the subsidiary then to be sold – elicited a swift and clear response that that scheme at least would escape BSD.

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