Tough Stance on Visa Policy and The New Immigration LawChina has recently started a 100-day campaign against foreigners working illegally and overstaying on their visa. At the same time a new immigration law has been passed that imposes stricter sanctions on companies who employ foreign workers.
Zero tolerance on ALL Chinese Visas
Some foreigners in China take a rather relaxed approach when it comes to applying or renewing their visas. The motto seems to be: “People get away with it all the time.” Many workers on China business trips hold tourist visas, and those who work full-time in China use business visas instead of legal working permits and just enter and exit to Hong Kong every once in a while.
Beijing is now cracking down on this care-free attitude – local police are swooping into bars popular among foreigners to check identification. Therefore, to avoid being on the wrong side of the law, all foreigners and foreign companies in China should adhere to these basic rules:
► Never do business in China with a tourist visa;
► Make sure no employees working in your office in China carry a tourist visa, may it be own staff, interns or business partners. Even if they are here for only one day, your company will be responsible in case of an investigation;
► For any activities that are effectively paid employment in China, apply for a work permit.
Local spot checks in offices are rare, but may happen: cases have been reported in which disgruntled former employees or competitors tipped off the local police on a company that has not followed the visa rules.
Harsher penalties for illegal workers|
How does this development fit in with the new immigration law? Major changes are that penalties for violations are now clearly specified and can reach up to RMB 100,000 per illegally employed person for the company. Furthermore, any gains from the illegal employment can be confiscated. Individuals face up to RMB 20,000 fine for working illegally, plus detention for up to 15 days. Additionally, they can be deported to their home countries and banned from entering China for 5 years.
Policies in favour of foreign workers
Apart from these provisions, the law also contains some interesting developments in favour of foreign companies. It includes a new visa category for “talented” individuals which is designed to make it easier for people with professional skills to obtain work permits for China. The specific requirements will be outlined later by the relevant authorities.
The new law was passed during a recent meeting of the People’s Congress but will only come into effect on July 1st 2013, thus allowing enough time to arrange for compliance. It is evident that China is trying to encourage certain categories of foreign investment; it can now identify areas with a lack of skill set in the local workforce and attract the right foreign workers with a policy of preferential treatment.This is from here !
Careful - don't do anything illegal business wise in China. But also China Authorities have to draw a very sharp line between the "good ones" & the "bad ones". Restricting visas on just one entry etc is very harmful for people for example running a Hong Kong office & must go (are forced to go) several times a month over the border to check factory etc. Please be reasonable !