Hong Kong is a separate travel area from Mainland China. Hong Kong has a visa-free entry for residents from over 170 countries and territories for trips ranging from seven to 180 days. Short-term visitors may conduct business negotiations and sign contracts while entering Hong Kong on a visitor visa or entry permit.
Arrangement for persons who wish to enter/stay in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) for employment as professionals.
An application for a visa/ entry permit to take up employment under the GEP may be favourably considered if:
- there is no security objection and no known record of serious crime in respect of the applicant;
- the applicant has a good education background, normally a first degree in the relevant field, but in special circumstances, good technical qualifications, proven professional abilities and/or relevant experience and achievements supported by documentary evidence may also be accepted;
- there is a genuine job vacancy;
- the applicant has a confirmed offer of employment and is employed in a job relevant to his academic qualifications or work experience that cannot be readily taken up by the local work force; and
- the remuneration package including income, accommodation, medical and other fringe benefits is broadly commensurate with the prevailing market level for professionals in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR).
Overseas Chinese nationals holding People’s Republic of China passports who meet the criteria stipulated above and normal immigration requirements may apply to enter the HKSAR for employment under the GEP if:
- the applicant has permanent residence overseas; or
- the applicant has been residing overseas for at least one year immediately before the submission of application [“overseas” means countries or territories outside the Mainland, the HKSAR and the Macao Special Administrative Region] and that the application is submitted from overseas.
In general, unless a person has the right of abode or right to land in the HKSAR, he/she requires a visa/entry permit to work in the HKSAR. While each application is determined on its individual merits, an applicant should meet normal immigration requirements (such as holding a valid travel document with adequate returnability to his/her country of residence or citizenship; be of clear criminal record and raise no security or criminal concerns to the HKSAR; have no likelihood of becoming a burden on the HKSAR, etc.) as well as the relevant specific eligibility criteria detailed above before he/she may be considered for the grant of a visa/entry permit. It should be noted that the eligibility criteria may be subject to change from time to time without prior notice.
It normally takes four weeks to process visa/entry permit applications for employment upon receipt of all the required documents. The Immigration Department will not be able to start processing the application unless all the required documents and information have been received.
All applications are processed and determined by the Immigration Department. Approval of applications is entirely discretionary and is subject to changes in government policies. The Director of Immigration reserves absolute discretion to refuse any application even if the application meets all eligibility criteria.