Visas for Mainland Chinese

After 1997, special visa arrangements for PRC nationals were introduced by the Hong Kong Immigration Department in order to attract highly skilled and qualified mainland professionals to the Hong Kong workforce, to enhance Hong Kong’s global competitiveness and to meet local manpower needs. These employment visas fall into three different categories.

(1) Admission Scheme for Mainland Talents and Professionals

To qualify, PRC nationals have to prove they possess unique skills, knowledge and experience not readily available in Hong Kong.

The scheme is quota-free and non-sector specific. The number of talented personnel and professionals admitted under the scheme will be adjusted according to local demand.

Documentary requirements to support an employment visa under this scheme are similar to that of a normal employment visa application. The scheme allows applicants to bring their spouse and unmarried dependant children to Hong Kong. As dependants, they are eligible to apply for dependant visas. Professionals and dependants will be eligible to apply for permanent residency after 7 successive years in Hong Kong.

Once the application is approved under this scheme, the visa label has to be stuck onto the applicant’s Exit-entry Permit (EEP) instead of the passport. Before the applicant comes to Hong Kong to activate the visa label, the applicant has to get an exit endorsement from the Public Security Bureau Office where the applicant’s household registration is kept.

This scheme has its own specific division within the Immigration Department and processing time for visas usually takes 4-6 weeks from the date of submission.

(2) One Year Rule

This visa is designed for PRC nationals currently overseas, who intend to take up employment in Hong Kong. The documentary requirements to support an employment visa under this arrangement are similar to that of a normal employment visa.

There are however two notable differences. PRC nationals must have a valid resident visa for a third country at all times throughout their visa application process. And they have to stay in that third country with a valid resident visa for at least one year prior to submitting their employment visa application to the Hong Kong Immigration Department.

If PRC nationals intend bringing family with them to Hong Kong, their dependants are eligible to apply for dependant visas.

Once the application is approved, the visa label has to be stuck onto the PRC passport. An exit endorsement is not necessary.

If PRC nationals possess dual citizenship with permanent residency in a third country, they will not be subjected to the above restrictions. In other words, they will be treated as a foreign national if they apply for an employment visa in Hong Kong.

(3) Degree Level Mainland Students Graduating from UGC Funded Institutions.

With effect from 1 August 2001, mainland students who completed their bachelor degree or higher-level studies in Hong Kong, may apply for work visas if they have confirmed job offers in Hong Kong.

This scheme is available to all mainland students who graduated from locally accredited full-time educational programs in Hong Kong at degree level or above and, who from 1990 onwards, graduated from UGC funded institutions at degree level or above.

Exchange students, graduates of part-time study programs and other mainland students who do not fall into the degree level or above category, are not eligible to apply. They can however apply for an employment visa under the Admission Scheme for Mainland Talents and Professionals.

The applicant’s spouse and unmarried dependant children may apply for dependant visas. Both the applicant and his family are eligible to apply for permanent residency after having lived in Hong Kong for 7 years with valid visas.

Visa processing time is usually 4-6 weeks from the date of submission.

Once the application is approved under this scheme, the visa label has to be stuck onto the applicant’s Exit-entry Permit (EEP) instead of the passport. Before the applicant comes to Hong Kong to activate the visa label, the applicant has to get an exit endorsement from the Public Security Bureau Office where the applicant’s household registration is kept.

Prism Service Involves:
  • Provide consultation service regarding to the documents required for the visa application;
    Prepare a tailor-made document checklist for the applicant and the applicant’s Hong Kong sponsor;
    Complete all necessary Hong Kong Immigration forms for the applicant;
    Review and organize the collected documents in favor of immigration policy;
    Suggest alternative documents if the applicant is not able to get the listed documents;
    Submit the application to Immigration Department;
    Reply on the applicant’s behalf to all enquiries and correspondence from Immigration Department;
    Prepare and draft all letters required for submission to Immigration Department;
    Monitor the application process;
    Keep the applicant and the sponsor updated on the status of the application;
    Accept the approval and have the visa delivered to the applicant;
    Provide guidance on Hong Kong Identity Card application.
Application Procedure:
  • 1. Free consultation regarding to the Hong Kong visa application;
    2. Advise the applicant and the sponsor on the alternatives and the likelihood of success;
    3. Obtain the sponsor’s signature on the letter of engagement;
    4. Obtain deposit payment;
    5. Prepare a tailor-made document checklist for the application;
    6. Complete immigration forms, drafts and letters;
    7. Review the collected documents to ensure they are correctly presented;
    8. Draft all letters required for submission to Immigration Department;
    9. Ongoing liaison with Immigration Department;
    10. Reply Immigration Department’s enquiries on the applicant’s behalf;
    11. Accept the visa approval and collect the visa label from Immigration Department;
    12. Deliver the Hong Kong visa to the sponsor;
    13. Provide guidance on Hong Kong Identity Card application.
Documents Required:
  • An application form ID(E) 990A with the applicant’s signatures;
    An application form ID(E) 990B with the sponsor's signatures;
    Copy of the applicant’s passport;
    Copy of the service contract or letter of appointment from the sponsoring employer;
    Copies of the sponsoring employer's business incorporation documents;
    Copies of the personal documents to prove that position cannot be filled by locals.
Processing Time:
  • The Hong Kong visa application process normally takes 4 to 6 weeks from the date of submission.
Remarks:
  • Student visa holders are not allowed to work in Hong Kong unless getting a consent from Immigration Department

Entry Arrangement for Taiwanese

The application procedure is the same as for other foreign nationals. Once a visa label is granted, the applicant will be advised to bring the visa to enter into Hong Kong instead of sticking the visa label onto the passport. Upon arrival in Hong Kong, the applicant should apply for a Multiple Entry Permit at Immigration Department and should transfer the entry visa into the Multiple Entry Permit.

Processing of the Multiple Entry Permit takes approximately one week from the date of submission.

Prism Service Involves:
  • Provide consultation service regarding to the documents required for the visa application;
    Prepare a tailor-made document checklist for the applicant;
    Complete all necessary Hong Kong Immigration forms for the applicant;
    Review and organize the documents in favor of immigration policy;
    Suggest alternative documents if the applicant is not able to get the listed documents;
    Submit the application to Immigration Department;
    Reply on the applicant’s behalf to all enquiries and correspondences from Immigration Department;
    Prepare and draft all letters required for submission to Immigration Department;
    Monitor the application process;
    Keep the applicant updated on the status of the application;
    Accept the approval and have the visa delivered to the applicant;
    Provide guidance on Hong Kong Identity Card application.
Application Procedure:
  • 1. Free consultation regarding to the change of status visa application;
    2. Advise the applicant and the sponsoring company on their alternatives and the likelihood of success;
    3. Obtain the applicant/sponsoring company’s signature on the letter of engagement;
    4. Obtain deposit payment;
    5. Prepare a tailor-made document checklist for the application;
    6. Complete immigration forms, drafts and letters;
    7. Review the collected documents to ensure they are correctly presented;
    8. Draft all letters required for submission to Immigration Department;
    9. Ongoing liaison with Immigration Department;
    10. Reply Immigration Department’s enquiries on the applicant’s behalf;
    11. Accept the visa approval and have the visa label endorsed onto the applicant's passport.
Documents Required:
  • An application form ID(E) 990A with the applicant’s signatures;
    An application form ID(E) 990B with the sponsor's signatures;
    Copy of the applicant’s passport (the personal particulars page);
    Copy of the applicant’s service contract or letter of appointment from the sponsoring employer;
    Copies of the sponsoring employer's business incorporation documents;
    Copies of the personal documents to prove that position cannot be fulfilled by locals.
Processing Time:
  • The Hong Kong visa application process normally takes 4 to 6 weeks from the date of submission.
Remarks:
  • Student visa holders are not allowed to work in Hong Kong unless getting a consent from Immigration Department

Quality Migrant Admission Scheme

This Scheme is a quota-based entrant scheme. It seeks to attract highly skilled or talented persons to settle in Hong Kong in order to enhance Hong Kong’s economic competitiveness. Successful applicants are not required to have secured an offer of local employment before their entry to Hong Kong for settlement. All applicants are required to fulfill a set of prerequisites before they can be awarded points under one of the two points-based tests, namely the General Points Test and Achievement-based Points Test, and complete for quota allocation with other applicants. Successful applicants under the Scheme may bring their spouse and unmarried dependent children under the age of 18 to Hong Kong provided that they are capable of supporting and accommodating their dependants on their own financial resources without relying on public assistance in Hong Kong.

The scheme is not applicable to nationals of Afghanistan, Cambodia, Cuba, Laos, North Korea, Nepal and Vietnam.

There are two tests under the Quality Migrant Admission Scheme:

General Points Test
The general points test calculates a score based on your age, family background, work experience and education qualifications. Currently you must obtain a minimum of 80 points to pass, from time to time, the minimum required points can be subject to change. The maximum point is 165. You may refer to our point’s calculator below to assess whether your data and credentials are adequate to meet the minimum pass mark.

CALCULATE IMMIGRATION POINTS

  • Age:
  • Academic/Professional Qualifications:
  • Work Experience:
  • Language Proficiency:
  • Family Status:
  • Number of Children:
  • Calculated points: 0


Achievement-based Points Test
The achievement-based points test is directed at individuals with outstanding achievements and/or exceptional talents or skills. Requirements under this test are very high. Applicants are assessed on achievements. To be successful and receive the necessary pass of 165 points, applicants must meet one of the following criteria:

- Received an award for exceptional achievement, e.g. Olympic Medal, Nobel Prize, or other national or international awards.
- Had their work acknowledged by peers or made a significant contribution to the development of their field of expertise, e.g. received a lifetime achievement award from a specific industry.

Prism Service Involves:
  • Provide consultation service regarding to the documents required for the visa application;
    Prepare a tailor-made document checklist for the applicant;
    Complete all necessary Hong Kong Immigration forms for the applicant;
    Review and organize the documents in favor of immigration policy;
    Suggest alternative documents if the applicant is not able to get the listed documents;
    Submit the application to Immigration Department;
    Reply on the applicant’s behalf to all enquiries and correspondences from Immigration Department;
    Prepare and draft all letters required for submission to Immigration Department;
    Monitor the application process;
    Keep the applicant updated on the status of the application;
    Accept the approval and have the visa delivered to the applicant;
    Provide guidance on Hong Kong Identity Card application.
Application Procedure:
  • 1. Free consultation regarding to the Hong Kong visa application;
    2. Advise the applicant and the sponsor on the alternatives and the likelihood of success;
    3. Obtain the sponsor’s signature on the letter of engagement;
    4. Obtain deposit payment;
    5. Prepare a tailor-made document checklist for the application;
    6. Complete immigration forms, drafts and letters;
    7. Review the collected documents to ensure they are correctly presented;
    8. Draft all letters required for submission to Immigration Department;
    9. Ongoing liaison with Immigration Department;
    10. Reply Immigration Department’s enquiries on the applicant’s behalf;
    11. Accept the visa approval and collect the visa label from Immigration Department;
    12. Deliver the Hong Kong visa to the sponsor;
    13. Provide guidance on Hong Kong Identity Card application.
Documents Required:
  • An application form ID(E) 981 with the applicant’s signatures;
    Copy of the applicant’s passport (the personal particulars page);
    Copy of the applicant’s unique qualification proof;
Processing Time:
  • The Hong Kong visa application process normally takes 6-18 months from the date of submission.
Remarks:
  • Student visa holders are not allowed to work in Hong Kong unless getting a consent from Immigration Department

Immigration Arrangements for Non-local Graduates (IANG)

Non-local graduates refer to non-local students who have obtained an undergraduate or higher qualification in a full-time and locally-accredited local program in Hong Kong. This also applies to Mainland Chinese.
Non-local graduates who submit applications to the Immigration Department within six months after the date of their graduation (i.e. the date shown on their graduation certificates) are classified as non-local fresh graduates. Non-local fresh graduates who wish to apply to stay and work in Hong Kong are not required to have secured an offer of employment upon application. They may be granted 12 months’ stay on time limitation without other conditions of stay provided that normal immigration requirements are met.

Returning non-local graduates who wish to return to work in Hong Kong are required to secure an offer of employment upon application.

Prism Service Involves:
  • Provide consultation service regarding to the documents required for the visa application;
    Prepare a tailor-made document checklist for the applicant;
    Complete all necessary Hong Kong Immigration forms for the applicant;
    Review and organize the documents in favor of immigration policy;
    Suggest alternative documents if the applicant is not able to get the listed documents;
    Submit the application to Immigration Department;
    Reply on the applicant’s behalf to all enquiries and correspondences from Immigration Department;
    Prepare and draft all letters required for submission to Immigration Department;
    Monitor the application process;
    Keep the applicant updated on the status of the application;
    Accept the approval and have the visa delivered to the applicant;
    Provide guidance on Hong Kong Identity Card application.
Application Procedure:
  • 1. Free consultation regarding to the Hong Kong IANG visa application;
    2. Advise the applicant and the sponsoring company on their alternatives and the likelihood of success;
    3. Obtain the applicant/sponsoring company’s signature on the letter of engagement;
    4. Obtain deposit payment;
    5. Prepare a tailor-made document checklist for the application;
    6. Complete immigration forms, drafts and letters;
    7. Review the collected documents to ensure they are correctly presented;
    8. Draft all letters required for submission to Immigration Department;
    9. Ongoing liaison with Immigration Department;
    10. Reply Immigration Department’s enquiries on the applicant’s behalf;
    11. Accept the visa approval and collect the visa label from Immigration Department;
    12. Deliver the Hong Kong visa to the applicant;
    13. Provide guidance on Hong Kong Identity Card application.
Documents Required:
  • An application form ID(E) 990A with the applicant’s signatures;
    An application form ID(E) 990B with the sponsor's signatures (if any);
    Copy of the applicant’s passport (the personal particulars page);
    Copy of the applicant’s service contract or letter of appointment from the sponsoring employer (if any);
    Copies of the sponsoring employer's business incorporation documents (if any);
    Copies of the personal documents to prove that position cannot be fulfilled by locals (if any).
Processing Time:
  • The Hong Kong visa application process normally takes 4 to 6 weeks from the date of submission.
Remarks:
  • The initial Hong Kong visa once obtained is valid for a maximum of 12/24 months (sometimes less).
    Since the applicant might already have a Hong Kong Identity Card, they can continue to use the current Hong Kong Identity Card.

Admission Scheme for the Second Generation of Chinese HK Permanent Residents 

Persons who are the second generation of emigrated Chinese Hong Kong permanent residents from overseas may apply to return to work in the HKSAR under the Scheme.
Applicants under the Scheme will have to meet, apart from normal immigration requirements, the following criteria -

(a). Aged between 18 and 40 at the time of application;
(b). Born overseas (i.e. not in the Mainland, the HKSAR, the Macao SAR or Taiwan);
(c). Have at least one parent who is holding of a valid Hong Kong Permanent Identity Card at the time of application and was a Chinese national who had settled overseas at the time of the applicant’s birth;
(d). Have a good education background, normally a first degree, but in special circumstances, good technical qualifications, proven professional abilities and/or relevant experience and achievements supported by documentary evidence may also be accepted; 
(e). Proficient in written and spoken Chinese (Putonghua or Cantonese) or English; and
(f). Have sufficient financial means and are able to meet the living expenses for their (including their dependants, if any) maintenance and accommodation in the HKSAR without recourse to public funds.

Prism Service Involves:
  • Provide consultation service regarding to the documents required for the visa application;
    Prepare a tailor-made document checklist for the applicant;
    Complete all necessary Hong Kong Immigration forms for the applicant;
    Review and organize the documents in favor of immigration policy;
    Suggest alternative documents if the applicant is not able to get the listed documents;
    Submit the application to Immigration Department;
    Reply on the applicant’s behalf to all enquiries and correspondences from Immigration Department;
    Prepare and draft all letters required for submission to Immigration Department;
    Monitor the application process;
    Keep the applicant updated on the status of the application;
    Accept the approval and have the visa delivered to the applicant;
    Provide guidance on Hong Kong Identity Card application.
Application Procedure:
  • 1. Free consultation regarding to the Hong Kong visa application;
    2. Advise the applicant and the sponsor on the alternatives and the likelihood of success;
    3. Obtain the sponsor’s signature on the letter of engagement;
    4. Obtain deposit payment;
    5. Prepare a tailor-made document checklist for the application;
    6. Complete immigration forms, drafts and letters;
    7. Review the collected documents to ensure they are correctly presented;
    8. Draft all letters required for submission to Immigration Department;
    9. Ongoing liaison with Immigration Department;
    10. Reply Immigration Department’s enquiries on the applicant’s behalf;
    11. Accept the visa approval and collect the visa label from Immigration Department;
    12. Deliver the Hong Kong visa to the sponsor;
    13. Provide guidance on Hong Kong Identity Card application.
Documents Required:
  • An application form ID(E) 1017 with the applicant’s signatures;
    Copy of the applicant’s passport (the personal particulars page);
    Copy of evidence of the applicant’s relationship with his/her Chinese Hong Kong Permanent Resident parent(s) e.g. applicant’s birth certificate
    Copy of valid Hong Kong Permanent Identity Card of applicant’s parent(s)
    Copy of proof of academic qualifications and relevant work experience
    Copy of the applicant’s financial standing
Processing Time:
  • The Hong Kong visa application process normally takes 6 to 12 weeks from the date of submission.
Remarks:
  • The initial Hong Kong visa once obtained is valid for a maximum of 12 months.
    Once the visa has been approved, the applicant is eligible to apply for a Hong Kong Identity Card.
    The applicant’s dependant spouse and children are eligible to apply for dependant visas

Testimonials

Client References

Chris and Bonnie at Prism have been an absolute pleasure to work with. They clearly explained the application process, assisted in drafting necessary documents and were always available to address any questions or concerns. We couldn't have asked for better consultants.

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Cinar, Karazona

Director, Organic Modernism Limited


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Phone: +852 3464 5200

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