China eases visa options for expats

The Chinese government has introduced a new class of visa to help attract foreign workers to China and make it easier for their families to join them.

As of the 1st September the new R visa is option is now available to expats. This is aimed at high-skilled workers who have 5 or more years worth of experience, highly-skilled expats are in short supply in China so this should prove helpful for expatriates looking to move there.

The new R visa are valid for between 180 days and 5 years and should only take one-and-a-half months to process. Alongside the R visa S1 and S2 visa categories have been added to help family members of highly-skilled professionals visit China. The different classes depend on whether the family members are visiting a family member who has a R visa or Z visa with the S1 visa allowing stays of longer than 6 months whilst the S2 visa tends to be for shorter visits.

As with all recent visa rule changes there are still a few points that need to be clarified and further guidance may be required before processing starts rolling smoothly.

You can find out more on the China Consular Service website, you need to scroll about half-way down the page to find the English text.

The TravelChinaGuide website also has details as to how to apply for the R and S visas.

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