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HMRC internal manual

Double Taxation Relief Manual

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HM Revenue & Customs
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Double Taxation Relief Manual: Guidance by country: Hong Kong: Shipping transport

Prior to the comprehensive agreement having effect, there was an agreement in place between the United Kingdom and Hong Kong which covered shipping transport (SI2000/3248).

Article 3 of that agreement provided that:

“(1) Profits of an enterprise of a Contracting Party from the operation of ships in international traffic shall be taxable only in the area of that Party.
 
(2) For the purposes of this Article, profits from the operation of ships in international traffic include:

(a) revenues and gross receipts from the operation of ships for the transport of persons, livestock, goods, mail or merchandise;

(i) profits from the rental on a full (time or voyage) or bareboat basis of ships;   


and  


(ii) profits from the use, maintenance or rental of containers (including trailers and related equipment for the transport of containers) used for the transport of goods or merchandise;  

where such rental or such use, maintenance or rental, as the case may be, is incidental to the operation of ships in international traffic; and

(b) interest on funds directly connected with that operation.

(3) The provisions of paragraph (1) of this Article shall also apply to profits from the participation in a pool, a joint business or an international operating agency, but only to so much of the profits so derived as is attributable to the participant in proportion to its share in the joint operation.

(4) Gains derived by an enterprise of a Contracting Party from the alienation of ships operated in international traffic by that enterprise, or movable property pertaining to the operation of such ships, shall be taxable only in the area of that Party.

(5) Capital of an enterprise of a Contracting Party represented by ships operated by that enterprise in international traffic, or by movable property pertaining to the operation of such ships, shall be taxable only in the area of that Party.”

Article 8 of the comprehensive agreement now deals with shipping transport and the 2000 Agreement ceased to have effect in 2011 by virtue of Article 26(3).