Update to Work Permit Renewal Process in China Announced

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on Monday, 15 January 2018
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This December, the China State Administration of Foreign Expert Affairs announced a change in the foreigner work visa renewal process that will affect every foreigner in China. The announcement states that all applications to renew their Chinese work permit must be submitted at least 30 days before the expiration on their permit. This means that all required paperwork must be prepared well in advance of the renewal period. The new regulation is to take effect on February 28th, 2018, just days after the 2018 Chinese New Year holiday.

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New Chinese “High-end Talent Visa” for foreigners is implemented in 2018

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on Thursday, 11 January 2018
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China introduces a new free, fast-track visa, for “high-end” foreign talent. The report, released by the state news agency Xinhua, stated that under new policy from the State Administration of Foreign Expert Affairs, applicants who qualify for the Certificate for Foreign High-End talent can obtain the new visa as fast as five working days. With this certificate applicants can apply for new 5 or 10 year multiple entry visas.

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China Slashes Import Tariffs on Consumer Goods

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on Thursday, 11 January 2018
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Beginning December 1st, 2017, The Ministry of Finance has stated that there will be a cut on import tariffs on a diverse range of consumer products. This initiative comes as an effort to facilitate the increasingly varied domestic demand and to aid the “consumption upgrade”. As foreign imported good are seen as higher quality and safer than locally produced products, they are currently more desirable to consumers hence, and this initiative is hoped increase consumer spending.

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What Awaits in China 2018: A More Dynamic and Flourishing Market —— An interview with PTL Group GM-Arie Schreier

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on Wednesday, 10 January 2018
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Q: How do you see the market shifting in China?

A: The type of international company that is entering the Chinese market is shifting from a more traditional manufacturing and industrial company to start-ups in the tech and internet industries. About 5 years ago, our feeling as an organization had been that everyone who wanted to enter the China market was already here, or that people had tried, failed, and then left. Concurrently, we began to witness a huge start-up boom not only around the globe but also in the Israeli market, which brought new entrants and clients for PTL Group—and they keep coming. Many Israeli companies have taken advantage of both Chinese and Israeli government grants to help support market entry in China. This aid smoothed the way for companies that would not have entered the China market without access to special economic zones such as dedicated industrial parks, and specific policies that allowed an easier entry.

These start-ups are not just Israeli businesses trying their hand in the Chinese market, some are set up exclusively for the Chinese market. One such example is PTL client UgaUga—an innovate baking products startup that specializes in cake mixes that are optimized for easy baking within a rice cooker, since ovens are not a common appliance in a Chinese household.

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The Inside Scoop: How to use the 144-hour Transit Visa

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on Wednesday, 10 January 2018
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China’s introduction of a 144 hour visa means that it is even for tourist to spend up to six days within the country without the hassles of the visa office. The visa was introduced with the aim at boosting business and tourism within the country.

There are certain rules and regulations that must be determined first in order to first qualify for the visa free entry. Firstly and most importantly is determining ones eligibility. There are only 53 countries that qualify for the visa free transit. The full list can be found here, which includes such countries as the United States, UK, Japan, South Korea and Australia.

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2018 Chinese/Jewish Holidays Calendar

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on Thursday, 14 December 2017
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Insights from Arie Schreier. How China is changing and what we can do to capitalize

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on Friday, 20 October 2017
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By Toby Marshall

ACBC boosted our week with yet another brilliant Round table presentation, this time from speaker Arie Schreier. And nice to see our old friend David Thomas back in the facilitation role - he does it so smoothly and his China knowledge is vast.

With Arie’s extensive experience consulting to and managing organizations globally, his stories held valuable insights for those planning to capitalize on the business opportunities in China.

And loved that he didn’t just share the ‘look at the success we delivered’ stories - he shared some stuff ups as well. So much more real and valuable than the perfect world that many firms pretend to have. What were some of his take home messages? 

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26 Prohibitions Issued for Company Names

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on Thursday, 19 October 2017
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Company name creation is the first thing you need to do when applying for setting up your legal entities in China, and the State Administration for Industry and Commerce (AIC) is the ministry that evaluates and approves your application. August 11th 2017, AIC interpreted the newly introduced "Restriction Rules for company names", which clearly stated the creation of company names must comply with the 26 rules.

Among the 26 prohibitions, 11 of them strictly ban those company names containing contents and words that may harm the interests of the state or society or containing any contents that may cause fraud or misunderstanding to the public; company names containing foreign country (area) names or international organization names and company names that consists of foreign characters or Arabic numerals, etc. 

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China Deepens the VAT Reform

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on Tuesday, 17 October 2017
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China’s Value Added Tax (VAT) reform was introduced in 2012 and implemented national wide in May 2016. From May 2016 to June 2017, 85.12 billion RMB has been cut from companies’ burden, according to the Ministry of Finance.

Premier Li Keqiang confirmed that China will continue to refine VAT reform, following an August 18th meeting of the State Council Executive Meeting.

The VAT reform programs announced this year continue to streamline and simplify China's tax structure.

 There are four major changes as followed:

1.Tax tiers have been reduced from four to three tiers (now 6 percent, 11 percent, and 17 percent, with the 13 percent tier removed) and reduce tax rates for farm products, tap water, and publications from 13 percent to 11 percent.

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A Way out in the Chinese Market for an International Software Service Company ---- An interview with PTL Group’s Client - Plataine

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on Friday, 13 October 2017
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Plataine is an award-winning provider of Cloud-based IoT manufacturing optimization software. Plataine’s patent-protected solutions provide material & asset tracking and

traceability capabilites, creating the Digital Thread from raw material to end product. Plataine’s AI-based Digital Assistants empower advanced manufacturers to make optimized decisions on time, every time. Plataine’s solutions are used by top-tier manufactures including Airbus, GE, IAI, and Steelcase. With its HQ and R&D center in Israel, Plataine extended its sales to China in 2009 through one sales representative, however, the sales took off dramatically since Mr. Jason Xu and a new team joined in 2014. Today, Plataine’s China sales activities is 10-fold the sales it was in 2014.

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WeChat “Mini Programs”

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on Wednesday, 23 August 2017
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Where are they heading?

On January 9th this year Tencent introduced WeChat Mini Programs after a long period of waiting. Before their launch, Mini Programs were the hottest topic among marketers and developers since they might well change the current mobile application market that is dominated by the App Store and Chinese alternatives to Google Play (since Google Play is not available in China).

What are WeChat Mini Programs?

WeChat Mini Programs is another function Tencent created for WeChat, a very popular app that has over 900 million monthly active users as of Q1 2017. The Mini Programs are developed based on the WeChat platform and can be run within WeChat itself. In other words, it’s an app within another app. Hence, mobile users don’t need to download a virtual app from the app marketplace, but can use the applications simply by opening WeChat.

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How to reach 100,000 reviews on a WeChat post

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on Wednesday, 23 August 2017
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Since more and more companies are realizing the importance of WeChat as a marketing tool in China, the following kinds of campaigns have been used

“Scan and follow our WeChat account to get 2 bottles of drink for free.”
“Take a picture and share on your moments and get 10 RMB discount.”
“Forward this campaign to your moments and receive a 100 RMB coupon. “

By using these general points above as the means to introduce your WeChat account, you can easily get your customers to spread your campaigns. Although many customers comply with corporate aspirations to share content, however after they have received the freebie or coupon they will delete the content which leads to a lack of results.

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A Letter from Head of China Marketing

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on Wednesday, 23 August 2017
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Dear colleagues and friends,

During the years we have been working for international companies and managing their Chinese digital marketing channels, I’ve come to realize that due to language and cultural barriers, most digital marketers working in the West find it difficult to keep pace with the fast changing digital landscape and regulations in the Chinese market. In the first case, the Chinese digital landscape looks very different from that in the West, e.g. there is no Facebook or Google here. Moreover, regulations here are liable to change from time to time, and that may influence the marketing activities and available channels that can be used in this market.

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New regulation of issuing Chinese VAT invoice comes to effect

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on Friday, 04 August 2017
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On May 19th, 2017, the China State Administration of Taxation (SAT) published an announcement titled, “Announcement of Matters Regarding the Issuance of Value-added Tax Invoices”.

In this announcement, it states that “from July 1 2017, a corporate purchaser needs to provide a Tax ID when obtaining a general VAT fapiao from a seller. The Tax ID should be on the VAT fapiao. If not, the VAT fapiao will not be seen as a valid tax payment receipt.” This means that corporations should exercise caution when they need issuing VAT fapiao since it appears that the SAT will monitor every corporation’s tax status.

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New Chinese “Green Card”

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on Wednesday, 05 July 2017
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In parallel with its newly implemented work permit system that categorizes foreign employees into 3 classes, China is reforming its permanent residence cards (Green Cards) to ease foreign experts’ lives in China.

The "Foreigner's Permanent Residence Card" will be renamed as the "Foreigner's Permanent Residence Identity Card." Just like the Chinese Identity Cards. The new ID cards will have a chip embedded that will ease the access to several social services in China, such as purchasing train and air tickets, bank transactions and hotel check-ins, etc.

Chinese “Green Card” is generally considered one of the hardest to obtain. Since 2004, when the government introduced this, only around 7,000 green cards have been issued. However, within the previous year the number of card holders has increased dramatically. “In 2016, 1,576 foreigners became new permanent residents of China. That's up 163% from the previous year, according to China's Ministry of Public Security.”

Keep in mind that not every foreign who resides in China is eligible for this card. Applicants must be in a specific tier based upon the visa class ranking system that has recently been implemented by Chinese authorities. This ranking system is based upon expert skills and attributes that they bring to the Chinese labor market. Some recent green card holders include high level business and technology executives, in addition to individuals who have out-performed expectations and brought value to China and Chinese companies.

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China’s Tax Offenders Blacklist System in a nutshell

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on Wednesday, 05 July 2017
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In 2016, the Blacklist system was introduced and implemented as a way of promoting “best practices” for tax recording and reporting among all business activities based in China. The relevant authorities now have the ability to enforce the 18 new disciplinary measures against any business that deem in violation of tax regulations. These new measures include: the restriction of access to governmental funds, the barring of companies leaving China, and the enforced disclosure of relevant information via the National Enterprise Credit Information Publicity System. Additionally, several other penalizing regulations are as follows:[1]

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HR Event Held at Daydayup Beijing

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on Wednesday, 05 July 2017
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May was a busy month for the staff at PTL. In the middle of the month, PTL’s China General Manager, Arie Schreier and Deputy General Manager Shahaf Nave traveled up to Beijing to conduct an HR seminar held by PTL at DayDayUp (DDU), a co-working space. Two of PTL’s clients are internet companies and they are hosted at DayDayUp with the HR and Admin support from PTL Beijing office. We realize that most newly founded companies found recruitment and HR management quite daunting and the rules are very different from the West. Therefore PTL held this seminar to share our knowledge and experience in HR with Daydayup members and the other newly started companies in Beijing.

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Supply Chain Management is Not Merely Managing Import and Export

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Interview with PTL Group Logistic Manager—Chris Pan

Chris Pan has over 12-year operating experience at PTL Group. Chris leads the team delivering profitable integrated supply chain management solutions to bridge overseas clients’ penetration into China and assisting to build solid company reputation across diverse industries, ranging from medical equipment, electronics, security, chemical to agriculture machinery, water treatment industries. 

Q: You use the term “Fourth Party Logistics Provider” very often, would you please elaborate the meaning of the term and how it differentiates from “Third Party Logistics Provider”?

A: The concept of a Fourth-Party Logistics (4PL) Provider is an integrator that manages the resources, capabilities, and technology of its own organization and other organizations to design, build, and run comprehensive supply chain solutions. Whereas a third party logistics (3PL) service provider targets at a function, 4PL targets at management of the entire process. A Fourth-party logistics provider can also be considered a consulting firm specialized in logistics, transportation, and supply chain management. In another word, the 4PL stands on a higher level and plays an important role in managing the client’s entire supply chain.

Take PTL Group as an example, as a 4PL provider we look after the whole process of our clients’ entire supply chain ranging from the sales forecast, cash flow planning at the HQ, importation/exportation, safety storage and distribution, etc. Our customized solution can help HQ make better plan and therefore implement HQ’s strategy with operational optimization.

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Brief Guide to the Latest Import Duty Regulations in China

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on Wednesday, 08 March 2017
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In 2016, there were several changes in import duty regulations. Goods that are imported into the Chinese territory may be subjected to three types of taxes and duties: value-added tax, consumption tax and customs duty.

Taxpayers of the three types of taxes and duties include all enterprises, units, household businesses and other individuals engaged in production or importation of taxable consumer goods within the territory of the People’s Republic of China.

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China’s Polluted Air is an Opportunity for Foreign Technology

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on Wednesday, 08 March 2017
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The Chinese are finding it hard to breathe. According to the WHO, the proper air quality level for daily living is no more than 25 micrograms of pollution particles per meter cubed of air. During the first days of 2017 in Beijing, the concentration of pollution particles in the air passed 500 micrograms, over 20 times the limit!

Under these conditions, PTL Group, as a company that provides shared offices in China and offers services including business and operational support for foreign companies, strictly maintain air quality and their offices are equipped with all required air filtration equipment, as well as a measuring device which shows the air quality at all times.  The company, managed by Arie Schreier, was awarded first place in a competition held by gem in Shanghai, which tested the air quality in a large number of co-working spaces in the city. The competition tested the air quality using three parameters: 2.5PM (concentration of small particles that pass through the respiratory system), amount of carbon in the air and amount of VOCs.  

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