Category Archive China

Legalization Process in China Streamlined After Country Adopts Hague Apostille Certification

April 9, 2024 Comments Off on Legalization Process in China Streamlined After Country Adopts Hague Apostille Certification By The Incorp China Team

With China’s adoption of the Apostille Convention, the process of certifying legal documents from fellow Convention members has been made simplified, more affordable, and much faster File photo: Ascannio, ShutterStock.com, licensed.
With China’s adoption of the Apostille Convention, the process of certifying legal documents from fellow Convention members has been made simplified, more affordable, and much faster File photo: Ascannio, ShutterStock.com, licensed.

PALM BEACH, FL – On November 7, 2023, the People’s Republic of China effectively replaced their prior legalization process for cross-border documents by officially adopting the Apostille Convention of the Hague Conference on Private International Law; this event came to be after Beijing previously agreed to the Convention in March of that same year, joining 126 other contracting countries.

The Apostille Convention of the Hague Conference on Private International Law – also known as the Convention of 5 October 1961 Abolishing the Requirement of Legalization for Foreign Public Documents, or simply the Apostille Convention – is an international treaty drafted by the Hague Conference on Private International Law (HCCH). It’s intended use is to greatly simplify and streamline the procedure in which a document that is issued by one of the countries contracted with the Convention can be certified for legal purposes when dealing with other contracted countries.

When a document is internationally certified within the confines of the convention, it is known as an “apostle” or a “Hague apostle.” The effect is comparable to taking a document to a Notary Public and having it notarized; if the document represents a legal agreement between two countries contracted within the Convention, an apostle issued by the origin country is enough to officially certify the document for both parties, with the receiving country not needing to certify it further.

China had used legalization – also known as consular authentication – to certify cross-border documents for decades. Foreign-produced documents previously needed to be notarized and legalized at the Chinese Embassy or Chinese Consulate in order to be utilized in China, and the process was typically complicated, time consuming, and expensive; this had the detrimental effect of making it difficult for non-Chinese investors and companies to conduct business in China.

With China’s adoption of the Apostille Convention, the process of certifying legal documents from fellow Convention members – 126 countries as of March 2024, notably including the United States, the United Kingdom, and the Russian Federation among its members – has been made simplified, more affordable, and much faster; the typical turnaround time for the legalization process was as long as three months or more, whereas an apostle takes as little as 4-14 days to be certified.

By having contracted with the Convention, China no longer needs to legalize foreign documentation via embassies or consulates; this process has now been replaced by an apostille issued by the designated authority in the origin country that will be immediately recognized in the destination country.

As a result of China adopting the Apostille Convention, it has greatly increased its opportunities for foreign investment and business dealings with multiple power-player countries on an international stage.

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Many U.S. Companies Moving Manufacturing to Mexico – Known as “Nearshoring” – Amid Rising Risks of China Reliance

March 6, 2024 Comments Off on Many U.S. Companies Moving Manufacturing to Mexico – Known as “Nearshoring” – Amid Rising Risks of China Reliance By The Incorp China Team

China has long been recognized as the manufacturing giant of the global economy. However, in recent years, efforts by global businesses to optimize supply chains and reduce risks have made the "near-shoring" trend increasingly popular. File photo: Sirtravelalot, ShutterStock.com, licensed.
United States outsourcing manufacturing to Mexico was slow as recently as 2019, but as of July 2023 Mexico made up 15 percent of all U.S. imports – granting it new status as this country’s largest trading partner – with China coming in second at 14.6 percent.. File photo: Sirtravelalot, Shutter Stock, licensed.

PALM BEACH, FL – While China has been the dominant force in global manufacturing for decades now, in recent years a phenomenon known as “nearshoring” – the practice of transferring a business operation to a nearby country, especially in preference to a more distant one – has taken hold of companies in the United States, with many weighing the risks of relying solely on the Asian juggernaut amid numerous concerns, including cost, reliability, and rising U.S./Chinese economic tensions.

As a result of these factors, many American companies are turning their attention to their immediate neighbor to the south – Mexico – for their manufacturing needs, leading to the country as of 2023 surpassing China as the U.S.’s leading trade partner.

In Q3 2023, audits and inspections in Mexico on the part of U.S. buyers showed over a 17 percent degree of growth year-over-year. This has been cultivated by U.S. companies desiring increased supply chain reliability and flexibility resulting in shorter lead times and more affordable transportation costs, in addition to establishing a cooperative economic relationship with one of America’s closest neighbors.

This greater reliance on Mexico came at the tail end of the COVID-19 pandemic; the United States outsourcing manufacturing to Mexico was slow as recently as 2019, but as of July 2023 Mexico made up 15 percent of all U.S. imports – granting it new status as this country’s largest trading partner – with China coming in second at 14.6 percent.

Bear in mind that American companies are not abandoning Chinese manufacturing, far from it; it’s just that many are recognizing the need to add additional options to their existing supply chain as more and more businesses and organizations develop international influence or start operating on an international scale.

For an example of the genesis of this sudden and rapid growth, in February of 2022 Walmart chose a family-run apparel business in Mexico called Preslow over their usual Chinese source to purchase a $1 million order of company uniforms. The reasons made sense- the pandemic had caused the costs of international shipping to skyrocket, and supply chain issues had resulted in ports being jam-packed with incoming transport vessels, resulting in months-long fulfillment delays.

The logic of relying on one country halfway around the world for important goods was beginning to be questioned.

Mexico has been gearing up for the rise of nearshoring; since 2019, the country has grown its industrial space by 30 percent, but is still in the process of assessing and addressing some of their manufacturing weaknesses as well, such as security, power availability, and infrastructure.

U.S. businesses have been taking note of the numerous advantages to dealing with their neighbor to the south for their needs, including the country’s exceedingly close proximity, low labor costs translating to reduced pricing, a proven and reliable industrial base, and – perhaps the biggest reason of all – the fact that all products manufactured in Mexico and imported to the U.S. that are compliant with the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) are assessed zero tariffs.

Other reasons for the growing popularity of nearshoring have been due to deteriorating economic relations between the U.S. and China; in 2018, the Trump Administration – claiming that Beijing’s aggressive trade practices were a violation of global trade rules – began imposing harsh tariffs on Chinese imports, a move that President Joe Biden continued to support after taking office in 2021.

Since then, the Biden Administration has encouraged American companies to engage in manufacturing with allied countries – called friendshoring – to bring back their manufacturing to the United States – known as reshoring – or, finally, to seek suppliers closer to the country via nearshoring.

In the near future, American companies are expected to continue to diversify their sourcing options, while nonetheless still keeping China as a major partner in a large number of their manufacturing ventures. It will be interesting to see how the industry will reshape itself in the years to come as globalization continues to grow and evolve.

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Business & Personal Relations In China Podcast

May 10, 2022 Comments Off on Business & Personal Relations In China Podcast By Robert Fisch

SupChina recently released a podcast with host Chris Marquis featuring Robert Fisch as his guest. Robert is a master storyteller and he draws on his diverse experiences in China to illustrate some key principles that businesses can learn from, such as the importance of personal relations and the human touch when doing business in China. And he also provides some very practical advice on many topics from setting up a wholly foreign-owned entity (WFOE) to how business in China has shifted in the COVID era. 

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What is an Internet Content Provider License?

April 23, 2021 Comments Off on What is an Internet Content Provider License? By The Incorp China Team

First, let’s get down to the nitty-gritty of Internet Content Provider (ICP) licensing. What is it? 

An ICP license is an essential prerequisite for attracting customers in the Chinese mainland. As we have written before, it is a registration issued by the state that allows legal operation of China-based websites to legally operate in the country. 

In order to establish and expand your business globally, especially to China, one must  consider the necessary steps to file for a separate legal entities, as well as consolidating electronic commerce, so that your business will thrive- not only are these steps to getting an  ICP License encouraged, but it is also requirement in order to officially set up your site in  China. The only possible exception to this is if your site is not accommodated in mainland China. 

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WeChat: What is it and Why is it so Popular in China?

March 30, 2021 Comments Off on WeChat: What is it and Why is it so Popular in China? By The Incorp China Team

WeChat. It allows Chinese people to make payments, install other apps, and even write micro-blogs. Despite its popularity in the Chinese mainland, it is not often used in other countries for privacy issues. However, let’s get started with the fundamental question:

What is WeChat?

WeChat (微信) is a Chinese multi-purpose app developed by Tencent. First released in 2011, it has become the most popular app in China due to its numerous functions, despite it initially only sending instant messages. Why did WeChat grow so rapidly in popularity? The answer is simple: as an all-inclusive app which has no competition in mainland China, WeChat is the dream of every developer. WeChat’s ubiquity in Chinese society makes it a necessity for anyone even visiting for a short time, so make sure to download the app once you’re in China, otherwise you might not even be able to pay a taxi driver.

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How To Open a Bank Account in China

March 25, 2021 Comments Off on How To Open a Bank Account in China By The Incorp China Team

Planning to operate a wholly foreign-owned enterprise business in China, whether it be a small business, a global company, or even a Fortune 500 company, can be fairly effortful. It is essential to take all the precautions needed to for your business to be successfully established. Once you acquire a business license, there are more steps to be taken further, such as, opening a bank account in China, to assist your business affairs. Although this step is necessary and can sound simple, opening an account in China can be challenging, especially recently, as the regulations became more stringent.

As of April 2020, the People’s Bank of China (PBOC) have made it obligatory to follow high level of analysis during the Know Your Customer (KYC) process. Because of this, the PBOC have ordered that all banks not only to oversee business activities, including financial transactions, but also to induct a few other conditions such as investigating your other bank accounts in addition to dormant accounts, seek capital transitions, examine times of transactions as well as suspicious or abnormal activities, restrict pay outs and limit online banking transactions.

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China’s Digital Market: How it Combats the Economic Consequences of the Coronavirus

May 5, 2020 Comments Off on China’s Digital Market: How it Combats the Economic Consequences of the Coronavirus By The Incorp China Team

Even before the surge of Coronavirus cases and the world going into lock down, the digital market in China has been on the rise, and more dynamically than most nations around the world. Such systematic progression is rooted in the country’s core business model as well as the business environment created by China’s rapid growth.

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Guan Xi, the key to business success in China

March 5, 2019 Comments Off on Guan Xi, the key to business success in China By Obed Diaz

While the Chinese business market is constantly modernizing, adapting, and growing; there is still a concept of immense cultural importance that has governed Chinese business practices for many years. The notion of 关系 (Guan Xi) is essential for any company to understand if they intend on doing business in China.

At its core, guan xi is about building relationships. Trust is crucial to business success in China, and it is something that does not come quickly. While it may seem counterintuitive in the current fast-paced business environment of the United States, a great deal of relationship building in China exists outside of conference calls and boardroom meetings. In China, face to face interaction helps build a kind of trust that simply cannot be acquired through only communicating through a phone speaker halfway across the world. Because of the integral part that guanxi plays in Chinese business; it is essential for an American company hoping to do business in China to make sure that they have a strong understanding of Chinese culture in order to build a strong relationship with Chinese businesses.

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ICP Licensing: How to Start Your Chinese Business off Strong

July 9, 2018 Comments Off on ICP Licensing: How to Start Your Chinese Business off Strong By Obed Diaz

Promising untapped markets are emerging all over China. As companies race to break into the new business climate, ICP Licensing is in growing demand. With rules and regulations constantly changing, and an overwhelming amount of Chinese paperwork, the registration process can get confusing. Nevertheless, completing this step is a fundamental part of your successful game plan, and we’re here to help.

In this article, we’ve created an all-you-need-to-know-guide on how to properly establish a competitive web presence in any mainland region.

Beware: This is a fragile and crucial part of your company’s success. The process is not to be taken lightly, although there are certain service providers out there who treat it so in order to make a quick buck or yuan. Pay attention to the points provided and we will teach you how to do it right.

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Be Prepared: Five Important First Steps for Setting up your Business in China

July 3, 2018 Comments Off on Be Prepared: Five Important First Steps for Setting up your Business in China By Obed Diaz

Compared to the fast-paced explicit processes which dominate Western business, starting a company in China can be a headache.  Combine extensive legal work with a social system opposite of your own and even the most experienced businessmen and women are in for a challenge. 

However, establishing a presence in China continues to be a profitable move for entities in every business sector. With endless resources at your disposal, how to begin gets confusing.  We’ve stripped away all the particulars and provided you with a basic idea.

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