New Policy of Foreigner Work Permit

On September 27th 2016, State Administration of Foreign Experts Affairs P.R. China has issued Foreigners in China Work Permit System Pilot Implementation Plan. This Implementation Plan follows a graded management to foreign workers in China. Before the reform, China has been carrying out two kinds of management systems: foreign expert management and foreign employment management.


Alien Experts License and Alien Employment License become Foreigners Work Permit Notice, while Alien Experts Employment Permit and Alien Employment Permit become Foreigners Work Permit. Now the expert license has been cancelled. The old license is still effective during the effective date.


The Implementation Plan is still under test from October 2016 to March 2017 in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangdong, Tianjin, Hebei, Anhui, Shandong, Sichuan, Yunnan, Ningxia. Since April 1st 2017, the Implementation Plan comes into force nationwide officially.


Under the new policy, the expert license has been abolished, however, the foreigners are classified into three classes, class A for high-level talents, class B for normal employees and class C for others. Chinese government encourages top-level talents to work in China, which is classified in Class A, without quantitative limitation. For class B, the quantity shall be controlled by marketing requirements. For class C, it shall strictly implement quota management. It is expected that it will be more difficult for foreign ordinary workers to work in China.


There are two ways to define class: Fixed Standard and Points-based.

On account of Points-based, according to the scoring items, if you get 85 points or above, you are assigned in class A. If the points are 60 or higher, you are assigned in class B. The scoring items include annual salary, education degree, Chinese level, age, working year, work place, etc.

Fixed Standard rules many conditions for each class. For example, if you won a Nobel Prize or are academician, you are absolutely assigned in class A. The foreign language teaching staff belongs to class B.


Employer shall apply online first, after 5 working days, if it passes the pre-qualification, the employer can print the Foreigners Work Permit Notice online. With this Notice, the employer may apply for an invitation to let the employee to obtain the visa to enter into China. The employee shall apply the Foreigners Work Permit within 15 days since you arrive in China.

For class A, all the procedures can be completed online and without submitting paper materials. Besides, foreigner who belongs to class A only needs to submit commitment letter to guarantee that he/she has no criminal record without no criminal record certificate issued by government department.


This new system is for sure very interesting and innovative, and this first phase will explore its potentials. As the topic can be quite complex, we suggest you to ask for any further information by writing to