Only foreign-invested enterprises (FIE) can use Foreign Exchange and for that matter they have to apply for a Foreign Exchange Certificate.
Documentation required for registration
Within 30 days after being issued a Corporate Legal Person Business Licence, a foreign-invested enterprise (FIE) must apply for registration of foreign exchange with SAFE at the place of its business registration by presenting its FIE Background Information Registration Form; official approval documents and approval certificate of establishment of FIE (copies); Corporate Legal Person Business Licence issued by the State Administration for Industry and Commerce and copy; approved valid contracts and articles of association (copies); and other documents as required by SAFE.
Use of Foreign Exchange Registration Certificate
When applying to SAFE for permission to open a foreign exchange account and opening the account with a financial institution, the FIE has to present its Foreign Exchange Registration Certificate and other documents. Upon opening the account, the designated foreign exchange bank would put down the name of the bank, currency type, account number, type of account, and date of opening of account on the foreign exchange registration certificate, complete with its official seal.
Annual Inspection of Foreign Exchange Registration Certificate
SAFE inspects the Foreign Exchange Registration Certificate annually. FIEs passing the inspection will have their Foreign Exchange Registration Certificate validated for another year. FIEs failing to undergo the annual inspection for two consecutive years will have their Foreign Exchange Registration Certificate invalidated. FIES whose Foreign Exchange Registration Certificate is revoked are not allowed to carry out foreign exchange receipt and payment transactions at designated banks without SAFE approval.