China Just Made it Easier for Foreigners to Get Work Visas

By That's, January 17, 2017

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There have been a lot of great changes in the last year for foreigners hoping to get work permits in China. And now it's even easier those with postgraduate degrees to find employment in the Middle Kingdom.

On January 6, the Ministries of Foreign Affairs, Education and Human Resources and Social Security jointly announced that foreigners who have completed master's programs within the last year can now obtain a Z visa within the Chinese mainland without prior postgraduate work experience. The degree can either come from Chinese or "well-known" international institutions.

This is actually a big deal as previously, foreigners with postgraduate degrees were required to have at least two years' of work experience to apply for work and residence permits. Not easy for those seeking new opportunities post-school.

READ MORE: China Ranking Expats by 'Talent' in New Work Permit System; Here's How China's New Expat Grading System Will Work

To waive the work experience requirement, you must meet the following criteria:

• At least 18 years of age
• Good health
• Strong academic record, with minimum B grade average (80 percent or higher) and good behavior 
• Clean criminal record
• Relevant degree and education background
• Proof of a confirmed job offer in China relevant to your degree, with a salary that is equal to or higher than the local average (as defined by the local Human Resources and Social Security department)
• Valid passport (or equivalent)

You will also need to provide the following during the application process:

• Employment history
• Offer letter from employer with salary
• Report from employer providing proof that job was advertised to local workers for 30 days or longer
• Health check
• Criminal record
• Degree and school transcripts
• Proof of good grades and behavior during education (note: this is not required for applicants with degrees from overseas programs)
• Photo taken within the past six months
• Employment license or foreign expert work permit, which can be obtained from any local branch of the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security

Once issued, the employment permit will initially only be valid for one year, but can be extended by up to another five years.

As we pointed out back in September, this was initially being launched in the Shanghai Pilot Free Trade Zone and the Shanghai Zhangjiang National Innovation Demonstration Zone. Now it has officially extended to foreigners outside of Shanghai.

[Image via Horizon]

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