Hong Kong Profits Tax – Definition of a Body of Persons

Normally a person chargeable to profits tax is an individual, a partnership or a corporation.

If a “person” carrying on a business or a trade in Hong Kong does not belong to the aforesaid categories, he is probably a body of persons — maybe a club, a trade union or a trade association. These “persons” may still be chargeable, but subject to special provisions of the Inland Revenue Ordinance.

Besides, a charity is exempt from tax if it does not carry on a trade or business. As established from case law, a charity is one doing the following: (a) relief of poverty, (b) advancement of religion, (c) furtherance of education or (d) any activities concerning public benefit. Political organizations, however, do not normally meet these criteria. If an organization claims to be a charity, it should apply to the Revenue for tax exemption under Section 88 of Inland Revenue Ordinance.