HONG KONG – Expansions for Foreign Workers

November 2, 2023

John Lee, the Chief Executive of Hong Kong, recently gave his 2023 policy address, which included policies to attract and retain foreign talent.

Multiple-entry Visa to Mainland China for Foreigners Working in Companies Registered in Hong Kong

Hong Kong will introduce a visa to attract more overseas companies to set up operations in Hong Kong and facilitate foreigners working in these companies to travel to the Mainland for business purposes. This is designed, according to Lee, to reinforce Hong Kong’s role in connecting Mainland China with the world. Foreign staff of companies registered in Hong Kong may now apply with the Chinese Visa Application Service Centre in Hong Kong for “multiple-entry visas” valid for two or more years to the Mainland China and enjoy priority processing.

Attracting and Retaining Foreign Talents

Lee also announced a series of policies designed to bring foreign workers to Hong Kong, including:

Expanding the coverage of universities under the Top Talent Pass Scheme by adding eight top-notch institutions from the Mainland and overseas to the list of eligible universities under the scheme, making a total of 184 institutions, with effect from November.

Relaxing visa requirements, effective immediately, for Vietnamese citizens applying for multiple-entry visas for business and travel. Hong Kong will also relax the visa policy for Laotian and Nepalese talents for employment, training, and study in University Grants Committee (UGC)-funded institutions.

Implementing the Capital Investment Entrant Scheme. Under this scheme, eligible investors who make investments of HK$30 million or above in assets such as stocks, funds, bonds, etc. (excluding real estate) can apply for entry into Hong Kong. This will strengthen the development of the asset and wealth management businesses, financial services, and related professional services. Details of the scheme will be announced by the end of this year.

Launching the Vocational Professionals Admission Scheme. To alleviate the manpower shortage in skilled trades, starting from the 2024/25 admission cohort, non-local students of designated full-time professional Higher Diploma programmes of the Vocational Training Council (VTC) will be allowed to stay in Hong Kong for one year after graduation to seek jobs relevant to their disciplines. This pilot arrangement will be reviewed after two years.


Immigration Insights

For more information on the new changes and how they may affect you or your business, please contact us.

This immigration update is for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for legal or scenario-specific advice. Furthermore, it is important to note that immigration announcements are subject to sudden and unexpected changes. Readers are encouraged to reach out to Newland Chase for any case- or company-specific assessments.