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Offshore Incorporation Trends

By Courtesy of lowtax.net The lingering effects of the financial crisis, which continue to suppress economic dynamism in many parts of the world, have undoubtedly contributed to a dip in offshore company formations in the second half of 2012. However, as some recent studies and statistical reports show, certain jurisdictions are doing much better than others in attracting new investors, suggesting that certain other forces are at play here. According to legal services consultancy the Appleby Group, the majority of offshore jurisdictions experienced a decline in company incorporation activity in the second half of 2012 compared with the first half....

Private Banking Myth and Mystery

By Rocky ChanThe intuitive description of private banking may be any banking, investment and financial services tailored for wealthy private investors. Private bank can be either an independent company or a division of retail bank, security firms and financial services institution. Historically, private banking had developed in Europe, known for managing assets of some royal families.  Nowadays, it is much more popular and demystified than before. It targets high net worth individuals (HNWI) for better and more customized services ranging from banking services (deposit taking and payments), discretionary asset management, brokerage, limited tax advisory services and some basic concierge-type services,...

Shanghai Government Issues Q&A on Shanghai Free Trade Zone Administrative Measures

By Courtesy of Asia BriefingThe Shanghai Municipal Government released the "Interpretation of the Administrative Measures for the Shanghai Free Trade Zone (hereinafter referred to as the 'Interpretation')" on October 15, which clarifies several issues regarding the administrative measures for the Shanghai Free Trade Zone (Shanghai FTZ). Detailed information can be found below.Q: What is the background for introducing the "Administrative Measures for Shanghai Free Trade Zone"? A: With the view to regulate the daily operations of the Shanghai FTZ, the Shanghai Municipal Government released the "Administrative Measures for Shanghai Free Trade Zone (hereinafter referred to as 'Measures')" on September 29,...

Family Offices Come of Age in Asia

By Leo Zhang In Asia, private businesses have been booming in the past few years, helping entrepreneurs in the region accumulate a massive amount of wealth. Nevertheless, the wealthy group is finding it increasingly difficult to manage assets in an efficient manner on their own as the economic scenario turns sophisticated and market volatility rises.The family office model, which has been widely accepted and utilized in Europe and North America, has been gradually expanded in Asia. Despite that the process could mean a generational shift, places like Hong Kong, Singapore and Australia may take the lead to benefit from the...

Shanghai's Pilot Free Trade Zone: A Reshuffle of Global Banking Landscape?

By Leo ZhangFor a long time, Shanghai has been trailing behind regional financial centers like Hong Kong and Singapore in cross-border banking services due to strict regulatory control over capital flows imposed by mainland authorities.As a result, only a select batch of domestic banks was allowed to be engaged in offshore banking business while foreign lenders faced quite a few limits in terms of offering international banking services on the mainland. However, the industry landscape will likely be changed after the Chinese central government gives the green light to Shanghai, the country's financial capital, to start a new wave of...

Trust and Foundation: Structuring for Wealthy Chinese

By Leo Zhang Although China's economy is experiencing a slowdown amid global economic uncertainties, the number of Chinese super-wealthy is still gradually increasing, making financial and asset planning an inevitable issue they have to face in the coming years.Nowadays more and more Chinese rich families are looking overseas for financial solutions and many of them have started to adopt western-style tools such as trusts and foundations in taxation and succession considerations. The trend is gaining popular as the younger generation began to take rein of their family businesses. By the end of last year, there were 2.8 million millionaires in...

BVI's New Office in Hong Kong :A Step Further to the Asia Market

By Lorna Smith. Asia Outbound had a quick Question and Answer session with BVI's Lorna Smith, OBE, MA, and TEP of LGS & Associates, who gave us an insight of the reason behind the new office. Q: Why would BVI consider establishing an overseas office in Hong Kong? A: The BVI has been a part of the Asian landscape - and Hong Kong in particular - since the mid 80's when it established its Business Companies Act. Today more than 40 % of BVI Financial Services Business comes from the Asia Pacific Region. So that Asia is the BVI most important market...

Asset Succession Needs Planning and Coordination

By Leo Zhang Sky Xue, a 33-year-old native Chinese from Wenzhou, has recently been stressed out by taking over a family business from his rich father. He did not know such an inheritance would turn out to be a headache, if not a nightmare. Xue's family runs a machinery-manufacturing factory in the city renowned for entrepreneurship in Zhejiang Province. Xue hoped his son would help him run the business, but they often argue or even quarrel on operation decisions. "My father doesn't think I can make the right choice," said little Xue, who had just obtained a Master degree on...