China announced easier visa permits for foreign professionals and high-skilled workers Thursday, as part of its effort to bridge the talent gap.
Applicants will be expanded to those who qualify as high-end talents in the Categories of Foreigners Working in China, including scientists, entrepreneurs and leading figures in technology-intensive sectors, according to new rules unveiled by the State Administration of Foreign Experts Affairs.
The expiration date of the visa could be extended to five to 10 years after issuance, with multiple entries and 180-day-stays for a single entry, the administration said, adding that the categories could be adjusted based on the country's changing demand for talent.
Spouses and minor children of the applicants could gain the same visa, as early as the day after filing applications. Foreign talent could get their confirmation of qualification in five working days.
All the applicants are given a visa fee waiver, even for urgent applications.
China is in the middle of its biggest ever influx of foreign-educated professionals.
Chinese Premier Li Keqiang said in September 2017 that as the world's largest developing country, China was at a critical stage of economic restructuring and upgrading, adding that "we should not only make use of Chinese talent resources and market space, but also adopt a more open policy for foreign experts."