The Association of Family Offices in Hong Kong, based on the rapid development of China's economy and society, focusing on the economic, social and cultural exchanges and integration of Mainland China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan, plays the role of the bridge and link between the government, market and clients, gathers domestic and foreign family offices (i.e. the offices with regard to the ultra high-net-worth individuals), related research fields, and related service fields , and elites from similar industry organizations, and builds the platforms for industry resource integration, communication and interaction, collaboration, and self-regulation jointly with domestic and foreign family offices, related research fields, and related service fields , and elites from similar industry organizations.
Association of Family Offices in Hong Kong
The Articles of the Association of Family Offices in Hong Kong
Article 1 The name of this organization is 香港家族办公室协会. The English name Association of Family Offices in Hong Kong is abbreviated as AFOHK (hereinafter referred to as “the Association”).
Article 2 This organization is an industry organization of family offices, which is legally registered in Hong Kong. The registration number in Hong Kong is 62457607-001-12-13-5.
Article 3 The goals of this organization: to bring together elites and experts in the industry, to introduce changes and new ideas with regard to the models of family wealth management and development, to play its role of consultation and planning functions, and to help private enterprises with their transformations and upgrades; to provide industry services, to promote exchanges and innovations in the industry, to improve professionalism in the industry, and to improve the industry competitiveness; to implement self-discipline management in the industry, to promote the operations by its members in compliance with laws, regulations and other rules, and to maintain the proper business order of the industry; to promote its members to faithfully perform the obligations and social responsibilities of family wealth management and inheritance, and to promote the healthy and sustainable development of the industry.
Article 4 This organization abides by the Constitution of the People’s Republic of China and the Basic Law of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region，and conducts various conference activities according to its own characteristics and not for profit.
Article 5 The residence of the organization: Room C, the 19th Floor, Lockhart Center, 301-307 Lockhart Road, Wan Chai, the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region.
The Scope of Responsibilities
Article 6 The scope of responsibilities of this organization includes:
(1) organizing and carrying out industry surveys and researches, collecting and processing information, opening up markets and bringing innovations to products and services;
(2) providing two-way services for its members and its members’ clients, editing professional publications, and developing industry propaganda, organizing education for investors, popularizing industry development-related knowledge, and guiding its members to provide qualified services to their clients;
(3) coordinating members to carry out exchanges of experience, holding forums of industry development, and providing professional consultation and planning to promote the healthy, rapid and sustainable development of the industry;
(4) playing the role of bridge and link, safeguarding the legitimate rights and interests of its members in accordance with laws, and reporting the suggestions and requirements from its members to regulatory authorities and other relevant authorities;
(5) formulating and implementing industry self-discipline rules, maintaining industry order, mediating in business disputes between its members or between its members and the investors for its members, promoting construction of industry integrity, and establishing the concepts of operations in compliance with laws, regulations and other rules;
(6) undertaking transfers and commissions of government functions, and purchases of various projects, proposing laws, policies and proposals, and formulating practice standards and business norms.
(7) conducting business trainings, qualification examinations and qualification management for practitioners, promoting the grade evaluation of the organizations of practitioners, and improving its organizational members’ service capabilities;
(8) establishing a comprehensive industry service platform, integrating industry resources, establishing innovative entities, serving the People’s Republic of China’s financial development and the demands from its members, and enhancing the overall competitiveness of the industry;
(9) actively promoting exchanges and cooperation with regard to the domestic and foreign industry developments of its organizational members, unifying its members to explore international markets, and standardizing its organizational members’ foreign exchange activities;
(10) carrying out other related work in accordance with laws and regulations and in terms of the delegations of the regulatory authorities.
Article 7 The Types of Memberships:
(1) The membership types are divided into professional memberships and common memberships; the members are divided into organizational members and individual members.
(2) The members with the professional memberships include family office organizations, family office research institutions, and senior people in the area of family office services.
Among them: the single-family office members refer to those family office organizations or individuals that provide one family with their services; the joint family office members refer to those family office organizations or individuals that provide more than one family with their services.
(3) The members with common memberships include the following four categories:
- the organizational members of the financial family service or the individual members of the financial family service. Such as the members of banks, insurance, securities, funds, trusts, investments, and the third-party wealth management agencies;
- the organizational members of the non-financial family service or the individual members of the non-financial service. Such as the organizations that provide the families with their special services in the areas of legal services, taxation, immigration, health, medical treatment, etc.;
- the organizational members of education training or the individual members of education training, such as family members education, the professional training for practitioners, and the training of professional qualification;
- the organizational members of groups: the related industry associations, the related academic organizations, etc..
Article 8 In order to apply for joining the Association, all the following conditions must be met at the same time:
(1) the applicant supports the Articles of the Association, agrees with the objectives of the Association, and has the willingness to join the Association;
(2) the applicant for the organizational membership should be the legally established company limited with the organization name, the organization structure and the business scope that meet the legal requirements in the People’s Republic of China and the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, the legally established limited company with the organization name, the organization structure and the business scope that meet the legal requirements in the People’s Republic of China and the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, the legally established partnership with the organization name, the organization structure and the business scope that meet the legal requirements, in the People’s Republic of China and the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, etc.;
(3) the applicant for the organizational membership should have the registered capital and the professional team, both of which should fit the family office business;
(4) the applicant for the individual membership should have the qualification(s) of or experience of engaging in the industry or the professional organizations that provide services in the industry; and have qualification certificate(s) for individuals, etc.;
(5) in the past three years, the business unit has not experienced any major changes that have affected or might affect its normal operation, nor litigation, arbitration and other major events that have affected or might affect its normal operation;
(6) the applicant for the individual membership has not violated any law nor been a Dishonest Person for the past three years;
(7) the shareholders of the legal person have been operating continuously for two years and have good financial standing;
(8) other conditions deemed necessary by the Association.
Article 9 The admission process:
(1) submission of the application for admission and the Form of Membership Registration;
(2) submission by the applicant for the organizational membership of copies of business licenses, of business licenses of legal person (or registration certificates of legal person) or of other qualification documents legally provided; submission by the applicant for the individual membership of the work experience, of the professional qualification certificate(s), of the business card, etc.;
(3) after the application is preliminarily examined by the secretariat and the Council made no objection to the same application the application will be reported to president of the Association for examination and approval;
(4) the Council or an agency authorized by the Council will issue the membership card.
Article 10 The members are entitled to the following rights:
(1) the right to vote, the right to be elected and the right to vote in the General Assembly;
(2) participation in the activities of the Association and receipt of the services provided by the Association;
(3) submission of criticism and of suggestion with regard to the work that the Association does and supervision over the Association;
(4) report of opinions and suggestions to the relevant authorities through the Association;
(5) requirement of protecting by the Association the member’s own legal rights and interests from being harmed;
(6) other rights that are stipulated by the resolutions of the General Assembly;
(7) voluntarily application for membership and freely withdrawal from membership.
Article 11 The members should perform the following obligations:
(1) compliance with the Articles of the Association, the self-discipline rules, the industry standards and the business norms, and implementation of the resolutions of the Association;
(2) maintenance of the legal rights and interests of and reputation of the Association;
(3) the active participation in the activities organized by the Association, acceptance of the tasks assigned by the Association, and provision of the relevant materials needed by the Association to perform its duties;
(4) compliance with the self-discipline management of the Association;
(5) payment for the membership fee as stipulated;
(6) the other obligations that are stipulated and will be stipulated by the resolutions of the General Assembly.
Article 12 The organizational member shall set up a member representative to perform its duties for the Association as the organizational member on its behalf. The member representative should be the person in charge of the organizational member or an authorized company director.
Article 13 If a member seriously violates the Articles of the Association, or commits rumors, instigation, ganging, or undermining the union of the association, the member shall be delisted or disciplined, after the Council gets de-listing or disciplinary action(s) voted through.
Article 14 In the event of merger, separation, or termination of the organizational member, its membership will be changed or terminated accordingly. The organizational member who changes its own member representative must report to the Association in writing, and the member representative will be replaced after the report is approved by the Association.
Creation of and removal of organizations of the Association and persons in charge
Article 15 The highest authority of the Association is the General Assembly, which is composed of all the members. The powers of the General Assembly are:
(1) formulating and amending the Articles of the Association;
(2) electing and removing directors and supervisors;
(3) reviewing and deliberating the work report of and the financial report of the Council, and reviewing and deliberating the work report of the Board of Supervisors;
(4) making decisions on the matters re changes, mergers, separation, and termination of the Association;
(5) making decisions on other matters that should be reviewed and deliberated by the General Assembly.
Article 16 The General Assembly is held every three years. When the Council deems it necessary or a joint proposal by one-third of or more than one-third of the members, an extraordinary General Assembly may be convened upon 15 days’ prior notice. If president of the Association cannot preside over the extraordinary General Assembly, a vice president authorized by the president shall convene the General Assembly. If it is necessary to advance or postpone reappointment of a term of office due to special circumstances, it shall be approved by the Council. The time change between advancing or postponing reappointment of a term of office and change of office on schedule should be maximally no more than twelves calendar months. The resolution of the General Assembly shall be implemented after two-thirds of or more than two-thirds of the members present (including entrusted voting members) vote for it.
Article 17 The Association has the Council. The Council is the executive body of the General Assembly, which leads the Association to carry out the routine work during the intersessional period.
Article 18 The powers of the Council are:
(1) to thoroughly carry out the resolutions of the General Assembly;
(2) to prepare for convening the General Assembly and to report to the General Assembly;
(3) to hear and review the work report and financial report of the Association;
(4) to review, deliberate, and approve self-discipline rules, industry standards and business norms;
(5)to elect president, executive president, and vice president of the Association, and determine establishment of and candidates for honorary positions.
(6) to propose convening an extraordinary General Assembly;
(7) to make decisions on establishment, modification and cancellation of working bodies and professional committees;
(8) to review and deliberate the annual work report and the annual work plan;
(9) to review the annual financial budget and final accounts;
(10) to review various proposals submitted for deliberation through the Office Meeting of the President’s Office;
(11) to make decisions on other major issues that shall be reviewed by the Council.
Article 19 How to select director candidates is based on the status of the member and the influence of the member in the industry, and the proportions of various types of members. Directors are elected by the General Assembly. The directors can be re-elected.
Article 20 The directors should meet the following conditions:
(1) being representative in the industry;
(2) being able to exercise the member’s rights and fulfill the member’s obligations normally;
(3) supporting the work of the Association;
(4) other conditions required by the General Assembly.
Article 21 The meeting of the Council must be convened by two-thirds of or more than two-thirds of the directors present, and in order to take effect, the resolution by the Council must be passed by two-thirds of or more than two-thirds of the directors present.
Article 22 The meeting of the Council convenes at least once a year. At the special circumstances, web conferencing and telephone conferencing are adoptable. If necessary, an interim meeting of the Council can be convened.
Article 23 If a director is absent from the meeting of the Council for two consecutive times without justification, his membership of the Council will be automatically cancelled.
Article 24 The Association has the Board of Supervisors, which is composed of all supervisors. The Board of Supervisors is the supervisory body of the Association.
Article 25 The powers of the Board of Supervisors are:
(1) to supervise the Association with respect to its implementing the Articles of the Association and the resolutions of the General Assembly and to report to the General Assembly;
(2) to attend the meetings of the Council as non-voting delegates and to supervise the work that the Council does;
(3) to review and exam the financial report of the Association and to report the results to the shareholders and the General Assembly after its review & examination;
(4) to report the problems existing in the work of the Association to the General Assembly, the regulatory authorities, taxation authorities and accounting authorities, and also to put forward suggestions re supervision;
(5) to make decisions on other matters that should be reviewed and deliberated by the Board of Supervisors.
Article 26 The terms of appointment of the supervisor member shall refer to the terms of appointment of the director member, which are stipulated in the Articles of the Association.
Article 27 At the Association the supervisor shall not concurrently serve as the director and the director shall not concurrently serve as the supervisor.
Article 28 The Association may set up the professional committees in terms of business demands. The professional committee is composed of the experts in the industry in the corresponding professional fields.
Article 29 The Association has one president (i.e. head of the Council), several vice presidents, one chief supervisor, and one secretary general.
Article 30 This Association employs the president responsibility system. The president shall have the qualifications of the registered director of the Association and shall be appointed as the president candidate by the Council and shall be appointed as president after being passed by vote by the General Assembly.
The candidates for the positions of the vice president for the first session shall be nominated by the preparatory committee from the directors (after that, the vice president is nominated by the president from among the directors), and elected by the General Assembly.
The chief supervisor shall be selected from the member representatives or the celebrities who are familiar with the industry, and shall be elected by the Board of Supervisors.
The secretary-general shall be appointed, which means to be nominated by the president and adopted by vote by the Council.
In order to strengthen the executive power, the president can nominate two executive presidents from among the vice presidents, and the appointments shall be voted through by the Council.
Article 31 President, the vice presidents, the chief supervisors, and the secretary-general of this Association must meet the following conditions and requirements:
(1) abiding by laws and regulations, adhering to the professional ethics of the industry, and having good professional quality;
(2) having a good influence and the prestigious reputation in the industry of family office wealth management;
(3) being in good health and having full capacity for civil conduct;
(4) showing devotion to the work of the Association;
(5) the age of the vice president shall not be more than 65; the age of the secretary-general shall not be more than 65; the age of the chief supervisor shall not be more than 70.
(6) any other conditions that are required and will be required by the General Assembly.
Article 32 Each term of the vice presidency shall be three years. In case of re-election there shall be no more than two consecutive terms. If the term of office is to be extended due to special circumstances, extension shall be passed by vote by the General Assembly.
Each term of office of the chief supervisor shall be three years. In case of re-election there shall be no more than two consecutive terms. If the term of office is to be extended due to special circumstances, extension shall be passed by vote by the General Assembly.
Each term of office of the secretary-general shall be three years. In case of continuing in office the secretary-general shall be in office for no more than two consecutive terms. If the term of office is to be extended due to special circumstances, extension shall be passed by vote by the General Assembly.
Article 33 The Association has the mechanism of the President Meeting, which is composed of the president, the executive president(s), and the vice presidents. The President Meeting studies and discusses major issues of development of the industry, and reviews the work done by the professional committees of the Association, the regional offices of the Association, and other institutions under the Association.
Article 34 The Association has the mechanism of the Office Meeting of the President’s Office, which is composed of the president, the executive president(s), the secretary-general, and other members related to the matters that are supposed to be considered and discussed in the Meeting. The Meeting considers and discusses the important issues with regard to the routine work.
Article 35 The president exercises the following powers:
(1) to convene and preside over the Council, the President Meeting, and the Office Meeting of the President’s Office;
(2) to examine the implementation statuses of the resolutions of the General Assembly and of the Council;
(3) to sign relevant important documents on behalf of the Association;
(4) to make nominations for the office of the executive president(s), the office of the secretary-general, and the positions of the main responsible persons of each professional committee, each regional representative office, and each subordinate agency, and to report to the Council for decision;
(5) to hire experts from inside and outside the industry as consultants of the Association;
(6) other powers granted and will be granted by the Council.
(7) the executive president(s) assists and acts in concert with the president with regard to work. When the president is unable to perform his duties for some reason, the executive president shall perform the president’s duties on his behalf.
Article 36 The secretary-general exercises the following powers:
(1) to preside over the office to carry out the routine work under the leadership of the president;
(2) to organize and implement the annual work plans;
(3) to coordinate and guide internal organizations to carry out their own duties;
(4) to deal with other routine affairs.
The Principles of Asset Management and Use
Article 37 The sources of funds for this Association are as follows:
(1) the membership fee paid by the member;
(2) the government subsidiaries regarding the Association’s services and the government payments for government purchases of the Association’s services;
(3) the financial aids from people from all social circles;
(4) the income from conducting consulting planning activities and from providing consulting services;
(5) the income from conducting business training, grade evaluation and qualification accreditation;
(6) the fruits generated by the funds for the Association;
(7) other legal income.
Article 38 The Association has the strict financial management system in order to ensure that accounting information is legal, authentic, accurate and complete.
Article 39 The Association is equipped with professionally qualified accountants. The accountant cannot be a cashier concurrently. The accountant must conduct accounting and implement accounting supervision. When the accountant is transferred or resigned, he must complete the handover procedures with the receiver.
Article 40 With regard to the asset management of the Association, the financial management system stipulated by the People’s Republic of China and the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region shall be implemented. If the source of the assets is state appropriation or social donation or subsidy, the source shall accept supervision by the audit authority and disclose the relevant information to the public in an appropriate manner.
Article 41 The Association must accept the financial audit of the relevant departments before the session of the Association leadership or the legal representative of the Association changes.
Article 42 The assets of the Association shall not be embezzled, privately divided or misappropriated by any unit or individual.
Article 43 The relevant regulations of the People’s Republic of China and of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region shall be guidance and be referred to when the salary, the insurance, and the welfare benefits are granted to the full-time staff member of the Association.
The Amendment Procedure of the Articles of the Association
Article 44 Amendment to the Articles of the Association must be made into an amendment by the Council. And then the amendment shall be passed by at least half of the votes of the Council, and then shall be finally reviewed by the General Assembly and passed by at least two-thirds of the votes of the General Assembly to become effective.
Termination Procedures and Disposal of Assets after Termination
Article 45 If the Association fulfills its mission, dissolves itself, or needs to be cancelled due to division, merger, etc., the Council shall propose a motion for termination.
Article 46 The termination of the Association must be approved by the General Assembly. Before termination, a liquidation committee must be established to deal with creditor’s rights, debts and problems arising possibly. During the liquidation, any activities other than liquidation shall not be conducted.
Article 47 The Association shall be terminated after the cancellation of registration is done with the registration authority that originally processed the registration of the Association.
Article 48 The Council of the Association reserves the right of interpretation of the terms of the Articles of the Association.
Article 49 The Articles of the Association came into effect on the date of adopted by vote of the General Assembly and shall be amended in accordance with the procedures stipulated in the Articles of the Association.
Article 50 The Matters not specified in the Articles of the Association shall be executed in accordance with the Constitution of the People’s Republic of China and the relevant laws and regulations effective in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region.
Association of Family Offices in Hong Kong
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