Businesses Now Required to Use Special Invoice Chop

Posted by Reading Time: 2 minutes

Foreign investors in China are required to use a new admin stamp to process invoices. Details and examples shown.

Mar. 4 – Effective from February 1, 2011, all invoices must be affixed with a special invoice stamp, according to the “Measures of the PRC on the Administration of Invoices” promulgated by the State Council on December 20, 2010. Entities who fail to affix the special tax chop on invoices can be fined up to RMB10,000.

Taxpayers must affix the special invoice chop on all invoices they issue, and the use of financial chops on invoices is no longer valid as of February 1, 2011, according to the “Notice of the Beijing State Administration of Taxation (SAT) Regarding the Carving and Usage of Special Invoice Chops,” issued on January 31, 2011.

This notice specifies that taxpayers must have a special invoice chop carved according to specifications given by the “Notice on Further Strengthening the Administration of Chops,” promulgated by the Beijing Municipal Public Security Bureau and eight other departments, and the “Circular of the SAT Regarding the Relevant Issues in the Style of Special Invoice Chops (Circular).” Previous special invoice stamps can be used until December 31, 2011, and invoices issued prior to the promulgation of this notice that are stamped with old special invoice chops continue to be valid.

In Shenzhen, based on our oral consultation with the tax authority, invoices stamped with old special invoice chops will continue to be valid until June 30, 2011. As for Shanghai, the style of all special invoice chops should comply with the specifications of the Circular (as specified below) by December 31, 2011. Please consult with the tax official in charge regarding your local tax authority’s requirements.

All special invoice chops should be carved by an agent designated by the public security bureau and comply with a uniform style as specified below:

Chop size and appearance

Oval length: 40 millimeters
Oval width: 30 millimeters
Margin width: 1 millimeter
Chop color: Red


The Chinese characters on the chop should be simplified characters in imitation Song typeface. The Chinese characters corresponding to “Special Invoice Stamp” below the tax code should be 4.6 millimeters in height and 3.3 millimeters in width.

In the center of the chop is the tax code. The Arabic numbers (Arial font) should 3.7 millimeters in height, 1.3 millimeters in width.


This article was originally posted on the Dezan Shira & Associates online business resource library. To view the original article, and other regulatory updates, please click here.

Dezan Shira & Associates is a boutique professional services firm and can advise on issues of due diligence and compliance in China. To contact the firm please email or you can download their brochure here.