Recognition of Membership
Members of the Hong Kong Institute of Chartered Secretaries (HKICS) have dual membership of both the Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators (ICSA) and HKICS. In addition, members also receive wide recognition from governmental departments, public organisations, statutory professional bodies, regulators as well as legal recognition of their professional status under the Hong Kong Companies Ordinance. Organisations that recognise members’ professional status include:
1. Companies Registry
The Companies Registry explained that members are recognised as a professional company secretary practicing in Hong Kong.
Reference to the Companies Registry defined that Professional Company Secretaries as follows:
a. "a professional company secretary practicing in Hong Kong" means a member of The Hong Kong Institute of Chartered Secretaries ("HKICS") holding the professional designation of FCIS, FCS, ACIS, ACS.
b. "a professional company secretary practicing in that place" means a member of the Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators (ICSA) holding the professional designations of either FCIS or ACIS.
2. Hong Kong Monetary Authority
The Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) agreed to include Members of the Institute in the definition of "suitable certifiers” under The Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorist Financing (Financial Institutions) Ordinance ("AMLO") and its associated Guideline ("AML Guideline") came into effect on 1 April 2012. All the authorised institutions can accept documents certified by Members of the Institute as a complete and accurate copy of the original documents. Please refer to the link below for further information: -
- Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorist Financing Guideline on paragraph 4.12.4
- Supplement on section. i.e. 18(3)(a)(iii) of Schedule 2 (refer to page 48)
- Guidelines on certification issued by the Institute
Please familarise yourself with the procedures for certifying documents. Should a bank wish to verify that certifier is a member of the Institute, please ask them to contact the secretariat's membership section at 2881 6177 or email email@example.com.
Members should inform the Institute by providing the following information whenever they encounter difficulties in certifying bank documents:
i. Name and membership number
ii. Bank’s details, stating the name of the branch of the bank; contact person with contact details.
Upon receipt of such information, the Institute will contact the relevant bank and attempt to rectify the situation.
3. Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Limited
Members are specifically considered by the Exchange as an acceptable qualification for discharging the functions of company secretary in Main Board Listing Rules 3.28 and Growth Enterprise Market (GEM) Listing Rules 5.14.
4. Hong Kong Bar Association
Members are entitled for the Direct Professional Access (DPA) to practicing barristers for legal advice. DPA allows HKICS members to brief and instruct practicing barristers directly without the intermediary of solicitors.
5. Official Receiver’s Office
Members are qualified to be appointed as a provisional trustee of the bankrupt and as a qualified professional to handle insolvency work under the Bankruptcy (Amendment) Ordinance.