Basic Requirements

Offshore schemes registered with or approved by a recognized overseas authority can become an ORSO exempted scheme.

Starting from 26 June 2020, no exemption certificate is to be issued to schemes based on the ground with not more than either 10% or 50 of their members (whichever is less) being Hong Kong permanent identity card holders. 

ORSO schemes granted an exemption certificate must comply with the requirements of the ORSO, including (but are not limited to):

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Provision of information annually

For every 12-month period beginning on the date of exemption certificate or an anniversary of the date, employers must provide MPFA with an annual report comprising the following documents:


  • an annual return
  • a written statement that the terms and members of the scheme are in ongoing compliance with the employment-based criterion (Employment-based Statement)
  • (a) for schemes exempted under Section 7(4)(a), documentary evidence of the validity of the registration with or approval from an overseas authority during the year (documentary evidence), or
    (b) for schemes exempted under Section 7(4)(b) or (c), a written statement of the total number of scheme members and the number of members who were Hong Kong permanent identity card holders on the date of the statement (membership statement).

The annual report must be provided within one month after the expiry of the 12-month period or within a longer period allowed by MPFA.

Notification of changes
If there are any changes to the employer / representative employer, name or address of the employer, or the scheme name, employers must notify the Registrar within one month of the change in a form specified by MPFA.
Settlement of periodic fees

Employers must pay an annual fee of $940 for a scheme within one month after the annual due date, otherwise a surcharge equal to the amount of the unpaid fee will be imposed. The annual due date is the last day of such period of 12 months and beginning on the first or any subsequent anniversary of the date of the exemption certificate.


Employers can pay in Hong Kong dollar via Faster Payment System (FPS), crossed paper cheque, bank draft or e-cheque made payable to “MPFA Administration Account”. Payment by e-cheque should be made via the e-Cheque Collection Portal.


For more details, please click to view A Guide to the Occupational Retirement Schemes Ordinance

For exempted schemes with an MPF Exemption Certificate

In addition to the above, MPF exempted ORSO exempted schemes must also comply with the following:

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Option offer
Employers are required to provide new eligible employees (if applicable) with a one-time option to choose between an ORSO scheme and an MPF scheme. Employers who have applied for an MPF exemption certificate before the commencement of the MPF System are also required to provide an option for existing ORSO scheme members to remain in the ORSO scheme or become members of an MPF scheme.
Withdrawal of MPF exemption certificates
To withdraw an MPF exemption certificate, the employer/representative employer must submit an application in the prescribed format (i.e. Form WD-EE). 

Employers must also:


  1. display the exemption certificate in a conspicuous position at their principal office in Hong Kong or at every premise where members of the ORSO scheme works; and
  2. provide each member of the ORSO scheme with a copy of the exemption certificate.