China has started tracking down some of its citizens living abroad to collect taxes, surprising expatriates who never had to pay levies back home on overseas income, according to people familiar with the matter.


State-owned enterprises operating in Hong Kong, which has one of the lowest tax rates in the world, told mainland Chinese expats recently to declare their 2019 income so they can pay taxes at home, according to the people, who asked not be named because they aren't authorised to speak publicly on the matter.


Chinese SOEs are also informing employees working in other places such as Singapore, two of the people said.


China, which charges taxes of as high as 45%, revised its income tax rules January last year to help authorities start collecting money from its citizens worldwide similar to what the US does with Americans living abroad.


But Beijing only disclosed detailed instructions this year on how to file such taxes, catching many expatriates flat-footed.


The move signals the beginning of what could be a major shake-up for one of the largest expat communities in the world as some could see their tax bills soar.


Though specific statistics on expats weren't immediately available, Chinese state media have reported there are about 60mn ethnic Chinese living overseas.







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Chinese expats to be taxed at up to 45% on foreign income



China has started tracking down some of its citizens living abroad to collect taxes, surprising expatriates who never had to pay levies back home on overseas income, according to people familiar with the matter.


State-owned enterprises operating in Hong Kong, which has one of the lowest tax rates in the world, told mainland Chinese expats recently to declare their 2019 income so they can pay taxes at home, according to the people, who asked not be named because they aren't authorised to speak publicly on the matter.


Chinese SOEs are also informing employees working in other places such as Singapore, two of the people said.


China, which charges taxes of as high as 45%, revised its income tax rules January last year to help authorities start collecting money from its citizens worldwide similar to what the US does with Americans living abroad.


But Beijing only disclosed detailed instructions this year on how to file such taxes, catching many expatriates flat-footed.


The move signals the beginning of what could be a major shake-up for one of the largest expat communities in the world as some could see their tax bills soar.


Though specific statistics on expats weren't immediately available, Chinese state media have reported there are about 60mn ethnic Chinese living overseas.







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