This week’s blog post is written by Withum’s International Services Group member, Phyllis Tsai.
Withum’s International Services Team recently welcomed one of our HLB International network firms from China, Baicheng Tax Consulting Services.
Beicheng has been operating as a professional tax service company since 2003. They mainly service large-scale companies and corporations in China. They are based in Shanghai and have braches in Beijing and Shandong Province. All of Baicheng’s five directors (plus one translator) came to visit Withum’s Princeton office to gain an understanding of the U.S. tax system and an introduction to Withum’s culture and various services we provide to our clients. Throughout this meeting, Baicheng also gave Withum some insight of the Chinese tax system and culture relating to marketing.
Since most of our visitors do not speak or understand English, May Du (senior tax accountant in Withum’s Princeton office) and I practiced our Chinese skills to try to translate Withum’s, culture, various industry and service niches, and social media involvement, etc. into Chinese terms our visitors would understand. Withum’s attendants also used this opportunity to practice correct business card exchange etiquette in China. The following are some points we learned from meeting our HLB friends:
- China does not have many social media tools as we do for Baicheng to market their services. They do not have access to Twitter, YouTube, or Facebook. They have limited access to LinkedIn.
- They have limited internet access so it is difficult for them to download HLB training materials or provide their clients training online. Therefore, they hold many conferences to provide the training to their employees and tax updates to their clients.
- China does not have individual tax returns currently. Chinese withhold taxes from their paychecks in lieu of filing tax returns (although this policy will change soon).
- Less than 10% of companies hire accounting firms to prepare corporation tax returns.
- China revised their transfer pricing rules recently which would be more in line with OECD rules (Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development).
- Some of Baicheng’s clients would like to invest abroad since Chinese government has been encouraging companies and individuals to do so.
During early 2016, it was reported by news media that due to China’s “Go Global” strategy, Chinese companies have invested more money in foreign locations in the first ten weeks of 2016, compared to all of 2015. Chinese companies invested $110 billion until mid-April 2016, compared to $108 billion in 2015.