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Why Do Hong Kong Investment Visas Get Denied?

September 20th, 2012

Posted in 60 Second Snapshot, Investment Visas, Refusals & Appeals, The Hong Kong Visa Geeza /


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The approvability  test for a Hong Kong investment visa is that you have to show you are in a position to make a substantial contribution to the economy of Hong Kong.

If you can do this through the calibre of your business plan and the manifest strength of your investment visa application then you can readily expect an approval from the Immigration Department for you to establish or join in your business in the HKSAR.

So the question is begged as to the reasons why investment visa applications get denied?

Typically, such cases are refused where:

1 - The business is not especially well funded or other resources which the HKID would expect to see are not in place at the time of approval or are manifestly lacking from the application itself.

2 - There is no obvious ‘investment’ to take place. Namely, the business is going to be run on a shoe string with growth occurring principally from revenues yet to be earned.

3 - The ‘substantiality’ aspect of the approvability test will not be satisfied as the business is effectively a one-man show and is likely to remain so due to the nature of the enterprise and the story which the supporting documentation reveals.

4 - There is nothing especially interesting about the business itself such that the HKID can’t get excited about, for example,new or improved technology, paradigm shifting value add or the personal skills of the applicant which would essentially be imparted to the local workforce if the investment visa was approved.

5 – Conversely, the proposed activity of the business is not deemed desirable, even if legal.

Finally, a significant reason for investment visa refusal is down to the fact that the applicant finds himself nursing a poor prior immigration record which negatively colours his all-important application this time around.

In my next post on this topic, I will discuss what is typically found at the heart of an approved investment visa application.

More Info You Will Find Useful

The D-I-Y Kit for a Hong Kong investment visa

10 must have resources for a successful Hong Kong investment visa

The merits of applying for a Reconsideration of a refused Hong Kong visa application

How to go about applying for a Reconsideration of a refused Hong Kong visa


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The Hong Kong Visa Geeza (a.k.a Stephen Barnes) is a co-founder of the Hong Kong Visa Centre and author of the Hong Kong Visa Handbook. A law graduate of the London School of Economics, Stephen has been practicing Hong Kong immigration since 1993 and is widely acknowledged as the leading authority on business immigration matters here for the last 24 years.

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