Foreigners with a doctoral degree working in Shanghai now have the opportunity to directly apply for Chinese permanent residence, commonly known as the Chinese green card, according to the official website "Online platform for Government Affairs of Exit-Entry Administration Bureau of Shanghai Public Security Bureau.

The original text is as follows:

Those expatriates with Ph. degrees and currently work in Shanghai, and abide by Chinese laws, have good health, and have no criminal records can apply for permanent residence in China.

The foreign spouse and their unmarried children under 18 years old of the above foreign applicants and abide by Chinese laws, have good health, and have no criminal records can apply for permanent residence together.

In this way, neither the length of work experience nor a minimum salary standard is required.This recent policy change is a significant development as it removes the previous restriction that limited eligibility only to overseas Chinese.

The new policy allowing expatriates with Ph.D. degrees to directly obtain Chinese permanent residence in Shanghai represents a significant shift in immigration regulations. It demonstrates China's commitment to attracting and retaining international talent and promoting academic collaboration. Foreign professionals with a Ph.D. degree can now enjoy the benefits and stability of permanent residence in Shanghai, fostering a diverse and inclusive community of skilled individuals contributing to the city's growth and prosperity.

According to the latest policy, the annual salary requirement for foreigners applying for working staff Permanent Residence (green card) in Shanghai has been raised, the applicant should have had an annual salary not less than 6 times the average annual salary of urban employees in the previous year in the region, for 4 consecutive years. 

In addition, the applicant must have paid indivudual income tax annually not less than 20% of their salary.

Taking the Shanghai average salary for 2022 as an example, this means that the minimum individual income tax requirement has increased from RMB120K to about RMB173K per year, and will be adjusted annually.

On April 25th, China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) announced that PCR testing requirements for all overseas arrivals to the Chinese mainland will be scrapped.

Starting April 29th, all travelers to China can present an antigen test taken within 48 hours prior to boarding, dropping a PCR test requirement. In addition, airlines are no longer required to check pre-boarding PCR test results, according to the spokesperson for China's Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Mao Ning.

These new rules are in effect as of this Saturday, April 29:

-No COVID tests will be checked during check-in when flying to the Chinese mainland. 

-Instead of a PCR test result, passengers can show a negative rapid antigen test (RAT) result issued within 48 hours before check-in. This result may be checked upon arrival to the Chinese mainland. 

-In other words, if you are planning on flying to the Chinese mainland, have a RAT kit ready to use before you check-in for your flight. 

A reminder for anyone traveling abroad from the Chinese mainland – while many countries have scrapped COVID testing requirements, you may still need to prove your vaccination status.

Make sure to double check the rules before you travel. According to Mao, China will continue to scientifically optimize its prevention and control policies based on the pandemic situation, and better safeguard the safety, health, and orderly exchange of Chinese and foreign personnel.