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Expert Speak: How to Renew Your Business Registration Number in Hong Kong

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Hong Kong is home to thriving businesses of all sizes, from start-ups to multinationals. If you operate a company here, we don’t need to tell you about its business-friendly policies, skilled workforce, and reasonable taxation rates.

One of the first steps in starting a business in Hong Kong is to apply for a Business Registration Certificate from the Inland Revenue Department. This process is simple, but it is important to be clear about the procedure.

The certificate contains your Business Registration Number. This number is important for several reasons. For a start, it is proof that your business is legally registered in Hong Kong.

You need a Business Registration Number for activities such as operating a bank account, hiring employees, and applying for government licenses.

Keep in mind that there is a difference between a Company Registration Number and a Business Registration Number. There’s no need to be confused between company registration renewal and business registration renewal. Check with the experts to understand the difference.

In most cases, your Business Registration Number is valid for one year. You can also apply for three years if you like.

Once the certificate expires, you need to renew it. The renewal process is similar to the registration process, with a few additional requirements.

Important to Remember: The Hong Kong authorities have introduced an eTAX service, through which the public can enquire about the business registration number of a company. This is helpful to check your status, or to find out about other businesses.

Contact Sleek. We will guide you through each step of company formation with complete transparency.

For business owners, this is an important step to remain compliant with Hong Kong regulations. To help you to understand what needs to be done, let us take you through the process, the documents you will need, and best practices to follow.

Understanding the Business Registration Number Renewal Process

Your Business Registration Number (BRN) is a unique 8-digit number used for business identification in Hong Kong. It is necessary for legal and administrative purposes. For example, a Hong Kong business must have a number on its tax returns.

Apart from the Business Registration Number, the certificate also contains information such as: 

  • Name and address of the company
  • Type of company and nature of business
  • Date of commencement and expiry 

Displaying the certificate with the number on your business premises shows that your business is compliant with regulations. It increases trust and demonstrates legitimacy.

That is why it is so important to renew it on time. The process starts with a business registration renewal demand note sent by the Business Registration Office.

This note is sent during the month before the commencement month of the renewed Business Registration Certificate. 

For example, if the renewed Business Registration Certificate will commence in June, the Business Registration Office will issue the demand note in the middle of May.

Important to Remember: If you do not receive a demand note on time, you should inform the authorities in writing. You should do this within a month of the expiry of your current Business Registration Certificate.

Sleek helps to manage your business easily with stress-free services and expert support.

Not every Hong Kong association needs to apply for a registration certificate and renewal process. The businesses that need registration include the following: 

  • Any activity for gain.
  • Any club with facilities, services, and premises for exclusive members.
  • Every company incorporated in Hong Kong under the Companies Ordinance.
  • Any non-Hong Kong company that has established a place of business in Hong Kong.
  • Every non-Hong Kong company with a representative or liaison office in Hong Kong. 

Neglecting the business register number can lead to penalties, suspension of activities, and even legal consequences. It is always best to check with professionals about the process. Effortlessly manage registration, renewal, expenses, payments, bookkeeping, financial reporting, and tax filing through Sleek.

Preparing the Required Documents

To make the renewal process smooth and painless, you should ensure that you have the necessary documents well in time.

In most cases, you will need to refer to your existing business registration number and certificate, your tax account number, and the demand note that you have received from the IRD.

There could be times when you have changed your business address, or made modifications to essential business operations. In such cases, you will need to fill in forms to notify the changes. These changes should be reflected in your renewed certificate. 

Apart from the above, successful businesses in Hong Kong need to maintain proper financial records. This is essential for the necessary audits and tax returns that businesses have to adhere to.

At Sleek, we make sure your books are audited and your taxes are filed on time. You can focus on growing your business while we handle everything else.

Important to Remember: If your business address has changed but the Business Registration Office has not yet been informed, you need to complete an additional form to notify the change.

Renewal Application Methods

To make it convenient for you to renew business registration, the Inland Revenue Department offers three ways to do so. You can either renew online, by post, or in person 

Here are some details of each method.

Online: This is the most convenient method. You can submit your renewal application and make payment electronically through the IRD website. This process saves time and effort.

Mail: You can also send your completed form, along with the required documents and a crossed cheque, to the IRD designated address.

InPerson: Those who need to be sure of renewal on time can also visit the IRD office in person and apply along with the necessary documents and payment. The addresses and hours of operation can be found on the IRD website.

Details of the Fees Payable

As we have pointed out, there are two types of business registration certificates. These are a one-year certificate and a three-year certificate.

The amount payable for renewal depends on the period for which the certificate is valid. The amount has two components: the registration fee and the levy

  • At present, the total amount payable for a one-year certificate is HKD 2,150. The fee is HKD 2,000 and the levy is HKD 150.
  • The amount for a three-year certificate is HKD 5,650. The fee is HKD 5,200 and the levy is HKD 450.

The fees can be paid electronically if you renew company registration online. Or they can be paid through crossed cheque, in case of payments in person or via mail. 

Common Mistakes and Best Practices

By now, we hope that you have realised the importance of the Business Registration Number and why it is essential to renew it on time. 

To make sure the procedure is seamless, here are some practices to follow. These practices will also help you to stay compliant in other areas such as filing tax returns on time.

  • Keep proper records in the prescribed format. This practice is essential for audit purposes, financial follow-ups, and for providing accurate information to the IRD.
  • Keep a note of the deadlines for renewal, as well as other important dates on the financial calendar. Doing this will help you prepare on time as well as follow up with the IRD in case you have not received a renewal notice or other financial information.
  • Working with professionals like Sleek will ensure that you avoid renewal, registration, and financial headaches. You will be free to continue your business activities while the experts at Sleek take care of all the other financial details. 

In Conclusion

Renewing your business registration number in Hong Kong is a crucial step in maintaining your legal standing and ensuring the uninterrupted operation of your business.

By understanding the renewal process, preparing the necessary documents, and following best practices, you can navigate this process with confidence.

To make the process hassle-free, contact Sleek for painless registration renewal. We’ll take steps to help you thrive in Hong Kong’s vibrant business landscape.


If you do not renew your business registration number, you may be subject to fines and penalties. You may not be able to continue conducting business in Hong Kong.

There are several benefits to renewing your business registration number. These include:

  • Proof of legal registration
  • Ability to open a bank account
  • Ability to hire employees
  • Ability to apply for government licenses
  • Ability to conduct business in Hong Kong

Here are a few tips on how to avoid common renewal mistakes:

Make sure you have all the required documents. If you are missing any documents, your renewal application will be rejected.

You may forget when your BRC is about to expire, so make sure you check the expiry date regularly.

Pay the fee in full, otherwise, your renewal application will be rejected.

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