Banks should not …

  1. Reject the account opening application upfront without undergoing a CDD assessment on the applicants.
  2. When conducting CDD measures, banks should not make unreasonable requests to their customers that are disproportionate or irrelevant to risk assessment.  These may include, for example:
    • requiring all directors and beneficial owners of an overseas corporate to be present at account opening;
    • mandating that all documents of an overseas corporate are certified by a certifier in Hong Kong;
    • requesting a start-up to provide the same degree of detail on its track record, business plan and revenue projections as a long-established company;
    • expecting a Hong Kong business registration certificate for all applicants or evidence of a Hong Kong office for all overseas corporates, irrespective of business model or mode of operation;
    • requiring voluminous or very detailed information on source of wealth sometimes going back decades irrespective of the risks presented by the relationship or type of service offered (e.g. MPF account, basic banking services with small balances) which is difficult or impossible for the customer to provide; and
    • rejecting account opening based on unreasonably high benchmarks such as expected or actual sales turnover.
  3. Bank also should not make the purchase of wealth management investment or insurance products or having a large amount of initial deposits as a condition for opening a bank account, or link these activities with the chance of success or processing time of opening of bank accounts.

Last revision date : 08 March 2023