High-level foreign experts working in Shenzhen's Qianhai and Shekou Area, part of the Guangdong Free Trade Zone (FTZ), their spouses and their underage children can apply for permanent residence permits in China with a recommendation from the FTZ administration office, according to a new policy that will take effect Aug. 1.
Foreign members of innovation teams, which are settled in the Guangdong Pilot FTZ-Qianhai and Shekou Area of Shenzhen, and foreign technicians who were hired by enterprises in the FTZ can accumulate points toward qualifying for a permanent residence permit in China.
The Guangdong Provincial Public Security Department will complete a review of qualification for applicants within 40 days and submit the applications to the Ministry of Public Security for approval, which will then be completed within 50 days.
"The authorities are working on detailed evaluation standards, and the plan will be enacted after approval by the Ministry of Public Security," Nie Yanbo, deputy chief of the Exit-Entry Administration of the Shenzhen Municipal Public Security Bureau, said at a news conference Thursday, elaborating on a series of favorable rules promised by the Ministry of Public Security on Monday.
According to the rules, which were tailored for the Guangdong FTZ, foreigners whose accumulative investments reached US$1 million in three years and have good taxation records can apply for permanent residence permits in China.
Those with doctorate degrees, having worked in the Guangdong FTZ consecutively for four years, and live in China for at least six months every year can directly apply for permanent residence permits.
The rules also support foreign students who completed higher education in China and want to start up businesses in the Guangdong FTZ. They can apply for a two-year personal affairs visa to work an internship and/or start a business. If they are hired, they can apply for working permits. According to Nie, enterprises in the Qianhai-Shekou Area are being encouraged to invite foreign students studying overseas to come and work as interns.
"High-level expat talents as well as those from Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan can also hire foreign housekeepers by signing personal guarantees and labor contracts. They can apply for residence permits for their housekeepers," said Nie.
Shenzhen now has around 28,000 foreigners from 150 countries working and living permanently in the city. Around 1 million other foreigners stay in Shenzhen for no more than six months, said the city's entry and exit authorities.