China to Implement Stricter Regulations on Foreigners

By: Erika Solem

Starting late April in Beijing, the Standing Committee of National People’s Congress (NPC) has implemented stricter reforms on the Entry and Exit Administration Law. Changes will result in more structured rules and regulations for foreigners living and working in China, and will be strongly executed until the end of 2012. These new, stricter rules will directly affect many aspects of foreigner’s entering and remaining in China today. Regulations include: increased penalties and legal responsibility, clarified dates and extension laws, and a more defined residential system.

We should expect to see these changes implemented by the Chinese government until the end of 2012, as they have been brought on to ensure social stability in China during the oncoming power shift taking place in October. Foreigners are strongly advised to carry a copy or picture on their phone of their passport, Chinese visa, and even police household registry form with them at all times in order to avoid problems with the Chinese police, as well as ensure their safety.

A number of police “sweeps” have already occurred throughout China, most recently in Shanghai. Last Thursday (May 31st) a group of police visited The Apartment lounge on Yongfu Lu to check the passports and paperwork of all foreigners there. They were particularly interested in the employees working at the lounge, as the new reformed laws pay particular attention to illegal workers entering the country. The police checked all of the patrons at The Apartment by checking their passport numbers with a small machine. Fortunately, at this incident no one was taken away or found to be violating Chinese immigration laws.

In order to avoid any problems with this ongoing “Hundred Days Campaign” on wiping out illegal immigrants from China, foreigners should always have the appropriate documentation ready and at-hand. Compliance with this will allow the Chinese government to carry out their ongoing actions against illegal immigration without conflict.

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