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The reversion of leased lands to the Macau Government

August 17,2015

The reversion of leased lands to the Macau Government

In 2009 the Macau Government, based in public interest principles and the fact that Macau lacks on available lands, created a study group to investigate leased lands that where not been put to proper use.

Consequently, a list of 48 leased lands were identified to be declared forfeited and consequently revert to the Macau Government.

However, in a recent decision the Macau Government stated that within that 48 list of leased lands, 16 did not meet the requirements to be declared forfeited and therefore may not be reverted to the Macau Government.

This decision caused some dissatisfaction among the public opinion because it wasn’t properly justified and it was noticed with a year of delay.

Consequently, the lack of motivation and/or legal justifications for this dispatch resulted in the opening of an investigation into this incident by the Commission Against Corruption of Macao (CCAC).

Bearing in mind the above, it is expected that CCAC will clarify any existing doubts or omissions regarding the decision of not declare only 16 among 48 leased lands that were listed as reversible to the Macau Government.v

In this respect, we should to highlight that the decision under analysis could arise a possible violation of the principle of equality if not well clarified by the responsible authorities.

Hong Kong – Profits tax exemption for offshore funds extended to private equity funds

On 17 July 2015, the Hong Kong Government published the Inland Revenue (Amendment) (No. 2) Ordinance 2015 extending the profits exemption for offshore funds to private equity funds.

Under the referred Ordinance, the three key extensions to the profits tax exemption are set as follows:

 The definition of “securities” has been extended to include transactions in shares of excepted private companies;

 Offshore funds, which engage in specified transactions even though such specified transactions are not managed by specified persons, are exempted from Hong Kong profits tax, provided certain conditions are met (Qualifying Funds);

 Special purpose vehicles (SPV) (whether a Hong Kong or non-Hong Kong SPV, including interposed SPVs) are exempted from Hong Kong profits tax on gains on disposal of an Excepted Private Company, provided certain conditions are met.

As we understand, this along awaited law change represents a positive step made by the Hong Kong government to enhance Hong Kong’s position as an attractive and competitive international asset management centre.

Finally, please be aware that the referred Ordinance will take retrospective effect, applying in respect of tax chargeable for any year of assessment commencing on or after 1 April 2015.

NUMBERS(SOURCEDSEC)
UNEMPLOYMENT RATE–(April to June) – 1,8%
VISITOR ARRIVAL(June 2015) – 2,248,281
OCCUPANCY RATE OF HOTEL SECTOR(June) – 73,9%

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