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Mainland E-Commerce Operators Face 1 January Registration Deadline

The majority of e-commerce operators active on the mainland have until 1 January next year to register with the appropriate local government department. The only exceptions to this requirement are small scale traders, agricultural businesses and low-level service providers, all of which will be entitled to use their IP identification as their registered business address.

This compulsory registration is in line with the stipulations of the E-Commerce Law of the People’s Republic of China, which itself comes into effect as of 1 January. In order to ensure that all the compliance requirements are fully understood, the State Administration for Market Regulation has also issued an advisory notice   Opinions on Best Practice with Regard to the Registration of E-Commerce Operators – that takes a step-by-step approach to detailing the required e-commerce operator registration procedure.

Among the key requirements outlined in the advisory notice are the following:

  • In order to register as business entities, e-commerce operators must apply to the local market regulation department, regardless of whether they are an enterprise, an individually-owned business or a specialist farmers’ co-operative. Among the exceptions to this requirement are individuals selling self-produced agricultural products / home-produced handicrafts, individuals providing small-scale labour services and those who only engage in occasional / low-value transactions for which no legal sanction is required
  • E-commerce operators that apply for registration as individually-owned businesses can use their IP identification as their business address. It is also incumbent on every operator to register the IP addresses of all the platforms in their service portfolio 
  • Any privately-owned businesses that uses their IP details as their official business address may only engage in online commercial transactions

For further details, please access the following links:

Opinions of the State Administration for Market Regulation on Best Practice with Regard to the Registration of E-Commerce Operators (Guo Shi Jian Zhu No. 236 [2018]) (in Chinese)

New E-Commerce Law Set for January 2019 Implementation

Content provided by Picture: HKTDC Research
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