Which type of foreigners can apply for a work permit more easily?

2023/10/20 11:48:49

The State Council recently issued the "Opinions on Further Optimizing the Foreign Investment Environment and Increasing the Attraction of Foreign Investment" (hereinafter referred to as the "Opinions"), which requires better coordination of the domestic and international overall situation, creating amarket-oriented, legal, and international first-class business environment, fully leveraging China's super large scale market advantages, and attracting and utilizing foreign investment more vigorously and effectively, in order to promote high-level opening upto the outside world Make contributions to the comprehensive construction of a socialist modernized country. The full text isdetailed in the "Opinions of the State Council on Further Optimizing the Foreign Investment Environment and Increasing the Attraction of Foreign Investment".

The Opinion proposes 24 policy measures in 6 aspects. One is to improve the quality of utilizing foreign capital. Increase efforts to attract foreign investment in key areas, leverage the comprehensive pilot demonstration and driving role of expanding the opening up of the service industry, broaden channels for attracting foreign investment, support the gradient transfer of foreign-invested enterprises, and improve the promotion mechanism for foreign investment project construction. The second is to ensure the national treatment off oreign-invested enterprises. Ensure legal participation ingovernment procurement activities, support equal participation instandard formulation work in accordance with the law, and ensureequal enjoyment of support policies. Thirdly, we will continue to strengthen the protection of foreign investment. Establish a sound mechanism for protecting the rights and interests of foreign investment, strengthen admini strative protection of intellectual property rights, increase administrative enforcement of intellectual property rights, and standardize the formulation of foreign economic and trade policies and regulations. The fourth is to improve the level of investment and operation facilitation. Optimize the residence suspension policy for foreign employees of foreign-invested enterprises, explore a convenient cross-border data flow security management mechanism, coordinate and optimize law enforcement inspections for foreign-invested enterprises, and improve service guarantees for foreign-invested enterprises. Fifth, increase financial and tax support. Strengthen the guarantee of foreign investment promotion funds, encourage foreign investment enterprises to reinvest in China, implement relevant tax preferential policiesfor foreign investment enterprises, and support foreign invest ententerprises to invest in areas encouraged by the state for development. Sixth, improve the promotion methods for foreign investment. Improve the mechanism for attracting investment, facilitate the promotion of overseas investment, expand channels for promoting foreign investment, and optimize the evaluation of foreign investment promotion.

Among these 24 policy measures, the 13th measure to improve the level of investment and operation facilitation mentions the need to optimizethe residence suspension policy for foreign employees offoreign-invested enterprises. Continuously optimize entry and exitpolicies and measures, and provide convenience for foreign executives, technical personnel, and their families offoreign-invested enterprises to enter, exit, and stay. Let's take a look at which foreign executives, technicians, and their families offoreign-funded enterprises can conveniently apply for work permits in China under the existing "Foreigner Work Permit System".

01 Which foreign companies and positions they hire can apply for foreign high-end talents (Class A)

According to the currently implemented classification standards for foreignwork in China, the chairman, legal representative, general manager, or chief technical expert hired by domestic and foreign medium-sized enterprises with senior management or technical positions, or small foreign-invested enterprises that meet the encouraged industries inthe Catalogue of Foreign Investment Industries and the Catalogue of Foreign Investment Advantage Industries in the Central and Western Regions. Foreign talents who meet the demand for market-oriented and encouraged positions can apply for foreign high-end talents (Class A) and enjoy convenient services such as "green channels" and "vacancy acceptance".

In order to deeply implement the spirit of the 20th National Congress ofthe Communist Party of China and the spirit of the Central Talent Work Conference, and implement the deployment requirements of the State Council's "Opinions on Conducting Pilot Work for Business Environment Innovation" (Guo Fa [2021] No. 24). In January 2023, the Ministry of Science and Technology and the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security decided to carry out a pilot work on the identification standards for foreign "high, elite, andscarce" talents in Shanghai. New and revised standards have beenadded and revised on the basis of the "Foreign High end Talents (Class A)" standard in the "Classification Standards for Foreigners' Work in China (Trial)". Click to refer to the "Pilot Work of Shanghai Foreign" High, Precision, and Shortage "Talent Identification Standards" for interpretation.

Personnel with senior management or technical positions who have added national key laboratories (recognized by the science and technology department), new research and development institutions recognized by the Shanghai Municipal Government (recognized by the science andtechnology department), foreign-funded research and development centers (recognized by the commercial department), trade oriented headquarters (recognized by the commercial commission), private enterprise headquarters (recognized by the commercial commission), and R&D and transformation functional platforms (recognized by the science and technology department) can apply for foreign high-endtalents (Class A).

Newly added personnel with senior management or technical positions hired by domestic and foreign medium-sized enterprises, or foreign invested advanced technology or product export enterprises in this city, aswell as small foreign-invested enterprises that meet the entries of the "Catalogue of Encouraged Foreign Investment Industries", such as chairman, legal representative, general manager, or chief technical expert, can apply for foreign high-end talents (Class A).

02 Whatare the standards for domestic and foreign medium-sized enterprises?

In December 2017, the National Bureau of Statistics revised and issued the "Measures for the Classification of Large, Small, and Micro Enterprises in Statistics (2017)" (Guo Tong Zi [2017] No. 213, hereinafter referred to as the current measures) based on the new national standard "Classification of National Economic Industries" (GB/T 4754-2017), while continuing the classification principles, methods, structural framework, and scope of application of the 2011 Measures.

The current method selects indicators such as employees, operating income, total assets, or alternative indicators, and formulates specific classification standards based on industry characteristics.The scale of various legal entity enterprises or units established inaccordance with the law within China is divided into large, medium, small, and micro. Individual businesses shall be classified according to this method. The industry scope includes 15 industry categories and social work industry categories.

❑Agriculture, forestry, animal husbandry and fishery


❑Manufacturing industry

❑Electricity, heat, gas and water production and supply


❑Wholesale and retail

❑Transportation, storage and postal services

❑Accommodation and catering

❑Information transmission, software and information technologyservices

❑Real Estate

❑Leasing and business services

❑Scientific research and technology services

❑Water conservancy, environment and public facilities management

❑Residential services, repair and other services

❑Culture, sports, and entertainment industries, etc

When actually judging the size of the enterprise (unit)

You need to pay attention to the two aspects!

一、Enterprise classification indicators shall be based on the current statistical system

➤ Employees: refers to the number of employees at the end of theperiod. If there are no employees at the end of the period, the annual average number of employees will be used instead

➤ operating revenue

● Industry, construction industry, wholesale and retail industry abovede signated size, accommodation and catering industry above designated size, and other industries with set main business income indicators shall adopt main business income

● Wholesale and retail enterprises below the quota use sales of goods as a substitute

● Accommodation and catering enterprises below the quota adopt turnover instead

● Agricultural, forestry, animal husbandry, and fishery enterprises adopt total operating income instead

● For other industries that do not have a main business income, the operating income indicator is used

➤ Total assets: replaced by total assets

二、The satisfaction of indicator conditions varies slightly

➤ Large, medium-sized, and small enterprises must simultaneously meet the lower limit of the listed indicators, otherwise they will be classified as a lower level

➤ Micro enterprises only need to meet one of the listed indicators

03 What are the encouraged industries in the Catalogue for the Guidance of Foreign Investment Industries?

With the consent of the State Council, the National Development and Reform Commission and the Ministry of Commerce publicly issued Order No. 52on October 28, 2022, releasing the full text of the "Catalogue of Encouraged Foreign Investment Industries (2022 Edition)"(hereinafter referred to as the "Encouraged Catalogue"), which will come into effect on January 1, 2023.

The revised version of the "Encouragement Catalogue" is animportant measure to further stabilize foreign investment under thecurrent situation. It is not only conducive to promoting high-level opening up to the outside world and accelerating the construction ofa new development pattern, but also helps to further stabilize foreign investment, optimize investment structure, and boost foreign investment expectations and confidence. The "Encouragement Catalogue" consists of two parts: one is the National Catalogue of Encouraged Foreign Investment Industries, and the other is the Catalogue of Foreign Investment Advantage Industries in the Centraland Western Regions.












































sources from SFBC

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