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Regulations on Examination and Approval of Permanent Residence of Aliens in China

(Approved by the State Council on December 3, 1986, promulgated by the Ministry of Public Security and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on December 27,1986, amended with the approval of the State Council on July 13, 1994 and promulgated by the Ministry of the Public Security and the Ministry of the Foreign Affairs on July 15, 1994)

These Rules are formulated in accordance with Article 33 of The Law of the People's Republic of China on Control of the Entry and Exit of Aliens(hereinafter referred to as The Law on Control of the Entry and Exit of Aliens).

Contents

Chapter I  Entry into the Country

Chapter II  Inspection of the Entry and Exit Certificates

Chapter III  Residence

Chapter IV  Registration for Lodging

Chapter V  Travels

Chapter VI  Exit from the Country

Chapter VII  Penalties

Chapter VIII  Other Provisions

Chapter I

Entry into the Country

Article 1 

For entry into China, aliens shall apply for visas from Chinese diplomatic missions, consular posts or other resident agencies abroad authorized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Aliens who hold ordinary passports issued by countries which have diplomatic relations or official trade contacts with China as well as letters or telegrams from authorized organization in China, may, under any of the following circumstances where they must necessarily rush to China but have no time for visa application to the aforesaid agencies, apply for visas to the visa-granting agency at the entry port as authorized by the Ministry of Public Security:

(1) they are invited at the last moment by a Chinese host to come to China for a trade fair;

(2) they are invited to China to make a tender or to formally sign an economic or trade contract;

(3) they come to China by appointment to supervise an export shipment, inspect an import commodity or to participate in a check-and-accept operation in accordance with contracts;

(4) they are invited to participate in the installation of equipment or in the emergency repair of an engineering project;

(5) they come to China at the request of the Chinese side to solve a problem of claims;

(6) they are invited to come to provide technical advisory services;

(7) they come to China due to a last-minute change in the composition of a visiting group which took place after the visa had been granted to the group and which is approved by the Chinese side;

(8) they come to China to see patients in critical conditions, or to undertake funeral matters;

(9) owing to force majeure, persons in immediate transit cannot leave the country within 24 hours by taking the original plane, or have to change to other means of transport for leaving the country; or

(10) they are invited to China for other matters, and really have no time to apply for visa to the aforesaid Chinese resident agencies abroad but hold letters or telegrams from the designated competent authorities that give the consent for them to apply for visa from the visa-granting agency at the entry port.

Visa-granting agencies at entry ports shall not handle visa applications of aliens who do not come under the aforesaid circumstances.

Article 2 

Visa-granting agencies at entry ports, as authorized by the Ministry of Public Security, are stationed at the following ports: Beijing, Shanghai, Tianjin, Dalian, Fuzhou, Xiamen, Xi'an, Guilin, Hangzhou, Kunming, Guangzhou (Baiyun Airport), Shenzhen(Luohu, Shekou) and Zhuhai (Gongbei).

Article 3 

Different categories of visa, such as diplomatic, courtesy, service and ordinary visas, shall be issued to different aliens in accordance with the different status in which they visit China and the different categories of passport they hold.

Article 4 

According to the stated purpose of aliens' visit to China, the ordinary visas shall be marked with certain Chinese phonetic letters:

(1) D visa to aliens who come to China for permanent residence;

(2) Z visa to aliens and their accompanying family members who come to China for a post or employment;

(3) X visa to aliens who come to China to study, to engage in advanced studies, or to do fieldwork, for a period of 6 months or more;

(4) F visa to aliens who are invited to China for a visit, investigations, giving lectures, doing business, carrying out scientific, technical or cultural exchanges, or for short-term advanced studies or fieldwork, etc. for a period of not exceeding 6 months;

(5) L visa to aliens who come to China for sightseeing or visiting relatives or for other private purposes (group visa may be issued to a group of nine or more aliens on a sightseeing trip to China);

(6) G visa to aliens passing through China;

(7) C visa to train attendants, airline crews and seamen and their accompanying family members in international operations; and

(8) J-1 visa to aliens who come to China as a resident correspondent, whileJ-2 visa to foreign correspondents who come to China for covering special events.

Article 5 

Aliens applying for visas shall provide such pertinent information as requested and go through the following procedures:

(1) to present a valid passport or a certificate that can be used as a passport;

(2) to fill in a visa application form and hand in recent frontal hatless half-length passport-size photos; and

(3) to present, for examination, documents of certification pertaining to the purposes of entry or transit application.


Article 6 

The documents of certification as mentioned in Item (3) of Article 5 of these Rules refer to:

(1) in applying for D visa, the permanent residence confirmation form, which may be applied for by the applicant himself or through his relatives in China to the entry-exit control department of the public security bureau of the city or county where the applicant is to reside;

(2) in applying for Z visa, documents of certification issued by the sponsor or employer organization in China indicating the engagement or employment, or letter or telegram sent by an authorized organization;

(3) in applying for X visa, documents of certification issued by the receiving organization or by the competent department concerned;

(4) in applying for F visa, a letter or telegram sent by an authorized organization;

(5) in applying for L visa for a tourist trip in China, a certificate of reception from a Chinese tourist service, and when necessary, the flight, train or ship ticket for the country(region) of destination after leaving China;

(6) in applying for G visa, a valid visa for entering the country(region) of destination, or through tickets in case such a visa is exempt;

(7) in applying for C visa, the relevant documents of certification that should be presented according to the agreements concerned; and

(8) in applying for J-1 or J-2 visa, documents of certification issued by the competent department concerned.

Aliens who are to come to China for permanent residence or for residence of one year or more shall in addition, in applying for entry visas, produce for examination a health certificate issued by a medical institution designated by the government of the country of their current residence or one issued by any other medical institution and certified by a notary public. The health certificate shall be valid for 6 months from the date of issue.

Article 7 

Aliens coming under the following categories shall not be permitted to enter China:

(1) those who are expelled by the Chinese Government whose term of no-entry has not yet expired;

(2) those who are considered prone to terrorist or subversive activities or violence after entering the country;

(3) those who are considered prone to smuggling, prostitution or drug trafficking after entering the country;

(4) those who suffer from mental disorder, or infectious diseases such as leprosy, AIDS, venereal diseases or contagious tuberculosis, etc.;

(5) those who lack the means to support themselves financially while staying in China; and

(6) those who are considered prone to other activities, after entering the country, which shall jeopardize the security and interests of the country.

Article 8 

Aliens may be exempt from going through the procedures for obtaining a transit visa if they hold a through ticket and have booked seats on international airliners flying immediately through China and will stay in the transit city for not exceeding 24 hours without leaving the airport; aliens who wish to leave the airport shall apply to the border inspection office for stopover permits.

Article 9 

When a vessel in international service anchors at a Chinese port, the foreign crew members and their accompanying family members shall, when wishing to disembark without leaving the port city, apply to the border inspection office for disembarkation permits, and, for lodging permits, when wishing to stay overnight on land. Those who, with justification, wish to go to places beyond the port city or are unable to leave the country by the original vessel shall apply to the local public security bureau for appropriate visas.

Chapter II

Inspection of the Entry and Exit Certificates

Article 10 

Aliens shall, upon arrival at a Chinese port, present to the border inspection office for examination their valid passport with visa and other relevant certificates issued by the Chinese government, and fill in entry-exit cards. They may enter the country after the border inspection office has examined, approved and stamped their certificates.

Article 11 

Upon arrival of a foreign aircraft or vessel at a Chinese port, the persons in charge shall fulfill the following obligations:

(1) the aircraft commander, the captain or their agent shall submit to the border inspection office the lists of the crew members and the passengers;

(2) they shall report, immediately upon discovery, cases of persons aboard attempting to illegally cross China's borders to the border inspection office for disposition; and

(3) they shall see that persons not permitted to enter the country leave on the original means of transport and that the expenses during the stay in China of persons who cannot promptly leave the country owing to force majeure are covered along with their travel expenses for departure.

Article 12 

The border inspection office shall have power to prevent the entry or exit of aliens coming under the following categories:

(1) those who do not hold valid passports, certificates or visas;

(2) those who hold forged, altered or other than their own passports or certificates;

(3) those who refuse to have their certificates examined; and

(4) those whose entry into or exit from the country shall not be permitted, as notified by the Ministry of Public Security or the Ministry of State Security.

Article 13 

Aliens shall, on leaving the country, present for examination their valid passports or other valid certificates as well as visas or residence permits authorizing their stay in China.

Article 14 

Aliens and means of transport of aliens, which are required by the visa-granting agencies to pass through designated ports, shall enter or leave the country only through the designated ports.

Article 15 

With respect to those aliens who are forbidden to enter the country according to Article 12 of these Rules, in the event that they are unable to return promptly by the original means of transport, the border inspection office may take necessary measures to restrict their bounds of activities, and give orders for them to leave the country by the next available means of transport.

Chapter III

Residence

Article 16 

Aliens who hold D, Z, X and J-1 visas shall, within 30 days of entry, go through the procedures with the public security bureau of the city or county where they are to reside for the residence permit for aliens or temporary residence permit for aliens. The term of validity of the aforesaid residence certificates shall be the time limits of the authorized stay in China for the certificate holder.

The residence permit for aliens shall be issued to those who will stay in China for a period of one year or more.

The temporary residence permit for aliens shall be issued to those who will stay in China for a period of less than one year.

Aliens who hold F, L, G, and C visas may stay in China within the time limits as their visas indicate, without the necessity to obtain the residence certificate.

Article 17 

In applying for residence certificates, aliens shall provide such information as requested and complete the following procedures:

(1) to present for examination their passports, visas and documents of certification pertaining the purpose of their residence;

(2) to fill in the residence application form; and

(3) where applying for the residence permit for aliens, to present for examination their health certificate together with their recent frontal hatless half-length passport-size photos.

Article 18 

The term of validity of the residence permit for aliens shall be one to five years, which shall be decided according to the purpose of residence of the alien by the public security bureau of the city or county.

To aliens who satisfy the requirements as provided in Article 14 of the Law on Control of the Entry and Exit of Aliens, the public security organ may grant long-term residence permit ranging from one to five years, and a permanent residence permit, to those with meritorious performance.

Article 19 

Aliens exempt from visa under the agreement between China and the relevant country shall, where they wish to stay in China for a period of 30days or longer, apply for the residence certificate after entry, in accordance with Article 16 and 17 of these Rules.

The provisions of the preceding paragraph shall not apply to aliens as mentioned in Article 34 of the Law on Control of the Entry and Exit of Aliens.

Article 20 

Aliens who need to prolong their stay or residence in China beyond the expiration of their visas or residence certificates shall apply for an extension before the expiration of their visas or certificate.

In the event that any alien, while staying in China, is found to have suffered any of the diseases as mentioned in Item (4) of Article 7 of these Rules, the Chinese competent authorities of public health may suggest to the public security organ that the alien in question be ordered to advance his date of exit from China.

Article 21 

In case of any changes in the entries (name, nationality, occupation or status, place of work, address, passport number and accompanying children, etc.) of the residence permit for aliens, the permit holder shall, within 10 days, go through the registration procedures for the change at the public security bureau stationed at the locality of his residence.

Article 22 

Where any holder of the residence permit for aliens wish to move out of the city or county of residence, he shall, before moving, go through the removal registration procedures at the public security bureau stationed at the locality of his residence and, within 10 days after moving in, go through the moving-in registration procedures at the public security bureau stationed at the new locality.

An alien residing permanently in China who wishes to apply for a change of residence shall first make an application to the public security bureau at the new place of residence for a permit, and then with this permit go through the removal registration procedures in accordance with the provisions of the preceding paragraph.

Article 23 

For the sake of national security, public order or other public interests, the municipal or county public security bureau may impose restrictions on the establishment of residences or business offices in certain areas by aliens or by foreign institutions; residences or business offices already established in the aforesaid areas under restrictions shall move to the nonrestricted areas within the time limits specified in the notice of removal issued by the municipal or county public security bureau.

Article 24 

Aliens residing permanently in China shall, once a year and at a prescribed time, present their residence permit for aliens to the local public security bureau for examination.

The public security bureau may, when considering it necessary, notify an alien to present his residence permit for aliens to the entry-exit control department for examination, and the alien shall do so accordingly at the time specified in the notice.

Article 25 

Aliens of 16 years of age or older who reside or stay in China shall carry with them their residence certificates or passports for possible examination by the police of foreign affairs.

Article 26 

As regards a foreign baby born in China, the baby's parents or their agent shall, within one month of the baby's birth, submit a report together with the baby's birth certificate to the local public security bureau and go through the registration procedures.

Article 27 

In the event that an alien dies in China, his family member, guardian or agent shall, within 3 days of the death, submit a report together with the death certificate of the deceased to the local public security bureau, and present, for cancellation, the residence certificate or visa of the deceased.

With respect to cases of aliens' unnatural deaths, the persons concerned or the discoverers shall report the cases immediately to the public security organ.

Article 28 

The competent authorities of the Chinese Government mentioned in Article 19 of the Law on Control of the Entry and Exit of Aliens refers to the Ministry of Labor of the People's Republic of China.

Chapter IV

Registration for Lodging

Article 29 

Aliens who stay at such enterprises or institutions as guesthouses, hotels, inns, hostels, and schools, or at government departments, public organizations and other Chinese institutions shall produce their valid passports or residence certificates, and fill in the registration form of temporary accommodation. When seeking accommodation in an area not open to aliens, they shall produce their travel permit in addition.

Article 30 

Aliens who lodge with the Chinese residents shall, through the hosts or by themselves, within 24 hours of their arrival in a city or a town, submit a report to the local public security organ with their passport and other certificates and the host's residence booklet, fill in the registration form of temporary accommodation, and within 72 hours of their arrival in the countryside, report to the local police station or to the local residence registration office.

Article 31 

Aliens who lodge at resident foreign institutions in China or with other aliens residing in China shall through the host institutions or the hosts or by themselves, within 24 hours of their arrival, submit a report to the local public security organ with their passport or residence certificate and fill in the registration form of temporary accommodation.

Article 32 

Aliens having long-term residence in China who wish to lodge temporarily in a place other than their own residence shall report and register the accommodation in accordance with the provisions of Article 29, 30 and 31 of these Rules.

Article 33 

Aliens who accommodate in mobile lodgings shall, within 24hours, submit a report to the local public security organ. The organizations or individuals who furnish sites for aliens' mobile lodgings shall 24 hours in advance submit a report to the local public security organ.

Chapter V

Travels

Article 34 

Aliens who wish to travel in cities or counties that are not open to aliens shall apply in advance to the public security bureau of the city or county where they stay for a travel permit, and they can start for their destination only after they have obtained permission. To apply for a travel permit, aliens shall go through the following procedures:

(1) to produce for examination their passport or residence certificate;

(2) to submit certifications relating to their purpose of travel; and

(3) to fill in the travel application form.

Article 35 

The longest term of validity of the travel permit for aliens shall be one year, provided that it shall not exceed the term of validity of their visa or residence certificate.

Article 36 

When aliens who have already obtained their travel permit wish to extend the term of validity of their travel permit, to visit additional spots that are not open to aliens, or to increase the number of accompanying persons, they shall apply to the public security organ for the extension or change.

Article 37 

Aliens shall not enter places closed to aliens without permission.

Chapter VI

Exit from the Country

Article 38 

Aliens shall leave the country within the time limits specified in their visas, or within the term of validity of their residence certificates.

Article 39 

Where holders of residence certificate for aliens leave and are to reenter China within the term of validity of their residence certificate, they shall, before leaving, apply to the local public security organ for a reentry visa in accordance with the relevant provisions of Article 5 and 6 of these Rules.

Holders of residence certificate for aliens shall, when leaving China, present their residence certificate to the border inspection office for cancellation if they will not return to the country.

Chapter VII

Penalties

Article 40 

Aliens who enter or leave China illegally may be punished with a fine of 1000 to 10000 Yuan, or held in detention for 3 to 10 days, and may also concurrently be ordered to leave the country within a specified time limits or be deported from the country; where the circumstances are serious enough to constitute a crime, they shall be investigated for the criminal responsibility according to law.

Article 41 

Persons in charge of means of transport or their agent who, in violation of the provisions of Article 11 of these Rules, refuse to fulfill the obligations may be punished with a fine of 1000 to 10000 Yuan, or be held in detention of 3 to 10 days.

Article 42 

Aliens who, in violation of the provisions of Article 16, 19 and20 of these Rules, stay in China illegally may be given a warning, or fined 500yuan for each day they stay for illegally with a maximum of 5000 Yuan, or beheld in detention of 3 to 10 days, and, where the circumstances are serious, concurrently be ordered to leave the country within a specified time limits.

Aliens who violate the provisions of Article 21 and 22 of these Rules may be given a warning or punished with a fine of not exceeding 500 Yuan, and, where the circumstances are serious, concurrently be ordered to leave the country within a specified time limits.

Aliens who, in violation of the provisions of Article 23 of these Rules, do not carry out decisions made by the public security organ may, in addition to being enforced to carry out the decisions, be given a warning or punished with a fine of 1000 to 10000 Yuan, and, where the circumstances are serious, concurrently be ordered to leave the country within a specified time limits.

Article 43 

Aliens who, in violation of the provisions of Article 24 and 25of these Rules, fail to present for examination their residence permit as required, or to carry with them their passport or residence certificate, or refuse to be examined on their certificate by the police may be given a warning or punished with a fine of not exceeding 500 Yuan, and, where the circumstances are serious, concurrently be ordered to leave the country within a specified time limits.

Article 44 

Aliens who engage in employment in China without approval of the Ministry of Labor of the People's Republic of China or departments authorized thereby may, in addition to being demanded an end to their office or employment, be punished with a fine of not exceeding 1000 Yuan, and, where the circumstances are serious, concurrently be ordered to leave the country within a specified time limits.

Any organization or individual who employs aliens without permission may, in addition to being demanded an end to its/his employ, be punished with a fine of 5000 to 50000 Yuan and in addition, be ordered to bear all the expenses required for repatriating the aliens they employ without permission.

Article 45 

Anyone who is held responsible for, in violation of the provisions of Chapter IV of these Rules, the failure to go through the registration procedure for getting accommodation or to submit a report to the public security organ for lodging registration, or for providing accommodation to an alien who does not hold any valid certificate, may be given a warning or punished with a fine of 50 to 500 Yuan.

Article 46 

Aliens who, in violation of the provisions of Article 34, 36 and37 of these Rules, make a tour to an area not open to aliens without approval may be given a warning or punished with a fine of not exceeding 500 Yuan, and, where the circumstances are serious, concurrently be ordered to leave the country within a specified time limits.

Article 47 

Aliens who forge, alter, use other than their own, transfer or traffic in visas or other certificates may, in addition to the revocation or confiscation of the original visas or other certificates with confiscation of their illegal gains, be punished with a fine of 1000 to 10000 Yuan, or held in detention of 3 to 10 days, and also concurrently be ordered to leave the country within a specified time limits, and, where the circumstances are serious enough to constitute a crime, be investigated for the criminal responsibility.

Article 48 

Those who violate the Law on Control of the Entry and Exit of Aliens and these Rules due to force majeure may be exempted from penalty.

When an alien is unable to pay a fine, the penalty may take the form of detention.

Article 49 

Penalties such as fines and detention provided for in this Chapter shall also be applicable to persons who are held responsible for assisting aliens to enter or leave the country illegally, causing aliens to reside or stay in China illegally, engaging or employing aliens who seek jobs without permission, or facilitating aliens without valid travel certificates in their entry into areas not open to aliens.

Article 50 

Persons are punished but refuse to accept the penalty of a fine or a detention imposed by the public security organ may, within 15 days of receiving the notice, appeal, directly or through the original organ that made the decision on punishment, to the public security organ at a higher level, which shall, within 15 days of receiving the appeal, make a final decision. Persons who are punished may also bring a suit directly to the local people's court.

Article 51 

The penalties provided for in this Chapter shall be executed by the public security organ.

Chapter VIII

Other Provisions

Article 52 

Aliens who wish to apply for extension or alteration of various types of visas or certificates shall go through the following procedures:

(1) to present for examination their passports, visas and other certificates;

(2) to fill in the application form for extension or alteration; and

(3) to provide certifying documents relating to the extension or alteration.

Article 53 

Aliens who apply for various types of visas or certificates, or for extension or alteration of their visas or certificates, shall pay fees for visas or certificates according to the relevant provisions.

The rates of fees for various types of visas and certificates shall be separately prescribed by the Ministry of Public Security and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Persons from a country that has signed an agreement with the Chinese government on fees for visas shall follow the relevant agreement.

Article 54 

Foreign children under 16 years of age who share the same passport with their parents or guardian, need not, when coming to China with their parents or guardian, go through separately the procedures for entry, transit, residence or travel.

Article 55 

In the event that an alien has his visa or certificates issued by the Chinese government lost or damaged, he shall promptly report to the entry-exit control department of the local public security bureau and apply for a replacement. Aliens who have lost their residence permit for aliens shall publish an announcement in a local newspaper to declare the lost permit invalid.

Article 56 

The format of various types of visas, certificates and application forms mentioned in these Rules shall be made out separately by the Ministry of Public Security and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Article 57 

These Rules shall go into effect as of the date of promulgation.