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Hong Kong Exemption from Salaries Tax and Profits Tax (Anti-Epidemic Fund) Order — Orbitax Tax News & Alerts

The Hong Kong Inland Revenue Department (IRD) has announced the Exemption from Salaries Tax and Profits Tax (Anti-epidemic Fund) Order, which came into operation on 29 May 2020. The IRD has also published guidance on the application of the Order, which includes the following main information regarding profits tax:

Profits tax—tax exemption

The Exemption Order exempts businesses from the payment of profits tax in respect of grants, subsidies or other financial assistance provided under AEF programmes.  The exemption, however, does not apply to sums (other than sums paid on a matching arrangement) that are ordinary trading receipts arising in or derived from Hong Kong from a trade, profession or business carried on in Hong Kong, which include but are not limited to:

  1. Proceeds of sale of goods:
    • Sale proceeds of masks received from the Government under the Local Mask Production Subsidy Scheme
    • Income received by technology companies for providing technology applications such as reusable masks
    • Reimbursements received by oil companies in respect of price discounts on liquefied petroleum gas sold to taxis and public light buses
  2. Consideration for provision of services:
    • Fees received by the service provider, mediators, and arbitrators for the provision of online dispute resolution services under the COVID-19 Online Dispute Resolution Scheme
    • Administrative fees received by oil companies, MPF trustees, service contractors of the Government and the Hong Kong Housing Authority, and sports organisations for implementing the relevant AEF programmes
  3. Incomes from the letting, sub-letting, or licensing of any premises or portion thereof:
    • Reimbursements received by landlords for offering "rental waivers" to their tenants

Additional information is provided in the guidance on salaries tax exemption and arrangements for filing tax returns by Employers or Individuals (employees).