China – Immigration Alerts

Shanghai – Z Visas Now Required for Some Legal Representatives

Update – Initiatives to Increase Science and Technology Foreign Talent in Shanghai


Shanghai – Z Visas Now Required for Some Legal Representatives

What has changed

Effective Immediately, legal representatives from thirteen (13) countries working for enterprises with headquarter status in Shanghai are now required to apply for a Z Visa before proceeding with work permit and residence permit applications. Previously, affected individuals qualified for Z Visa process exemption.

Who is affected?
What to expect

  • Legal representatives from affected countries working for an enterprise with headquarter status in Shanghai

Legal representatives from the following thirteen (13) countries will no longer be exempt from obtaining a Z visa prior to applying for the work and residence permits in Shanghai.

  • Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan, Sri Lanka, Nigeria, Kazakhstan, Kyrghyzstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, and The Syrian Arab Republic.

Additionally, if the enterprise headquartered in Shanghai is from one of the thirteen (13) countries, than the legal representative, regardless of nationality, will also be required to obtain a Z Visa prior to applying for the work and residence permit in Shanghai.

What you need to do
Planning ahead

  • Affected individuals will have to plan for additional processing time to apply for the Z visa.
  • Contact your Emigra Worldwide attorney or representative for further details on how these updates may impact you or your client.

Update – Initiatives to Increase Science and Technology Foreign Talent in Shanghai

What has changed

On August 19, 2015, the Shanghai Human Resources and Social Security Bureau announced further details to recent initiatives concerning simplified visa application processes for foreign talent. Further to our July 9, 2015 alert, the specifics on instruction, talent classification and guidelines, documentation, and application processes have been defined.

Previously the specifics of the new initiative were not clearly publicized.

Who is affected?
What to expect

  • Companies sponsoring foreign employees in Shanghai; high tech companies, employees, entrepreneurs, and students.

Recent changes to Shanghai immigration aim to make exit-entry applications more convenient for foreign talent with the intention to build the city into a globalized hub for science and technology. The Shanghai Human Resources and Social Security Bureau recently released additional information on the foreign talents initiatives. Some of the key elements of the initiative are outlined below.

Qualifying as High-level Talent

High-level talent is defined as well know award winners, enshrine high-level talents and those with exceptional skills.

Simplified application process for residence permit

High level talent can apply for a residence permit for up to five (5) years (sixty year age limit no longer applies) after being evaluated by the Shanghai Human Resources and Social Security Bureau. Individuals may then apply for permanent residence once they have worked in Shanghai for three (3) consecutive years.

Pilot Plan for High Level Talents to apply for Talent Visa (R Visa)

A Pilot Plan has been developed to provide convenience for eligible applicants coming to Shanghai to work within or help build the city’s science and technology presence.

Priority for Foreign Expert Permit

Priority is given to high level talents that have worked in Shanghai for an extended amount of time, have globally recognized talents, or have special skills, when applying for a Foreign Expert Permit.

Pilot Plan for Overseas Students to stay in Shanghai after graduation

Foreign students that graduate from a University in Shanghai with at least a Masters degree and commit to working within the Shanghai Free Trade Zone or Zhangjing High-tech Zone, can apply for an Alien Employment License, Alien Employment Permit and work category Residence Permit.

Shanghai Overseas Talents Residence Permit (B Certificate) Policy

The scope of the B Certificate has expanded and applicants will now benefit from a shorter processing time and an extended validity of up to ten (10) years.

Alien Employment Permit and Foreign Expert Permit applications

A centralized location has been designated for submitting applications and obtaining information making it easier for foreign talents to apply for relevant foreign Expert or alien employment permits.

What you need to do
Planning ahead

  • For specifics on qualification as foreign talent or documents required, please contact your Emigra Worldwide representative
  • Contact your Emigra Worldwide attorney or representative for further details in how these updates may impact you or your client

The information above was provided by Emigra Worldwide, our global network partners, and relevant government authorities. The information herein is for general purposes only and not intended as advice for a particular matter. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact the global immigration professional with whom you work.

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