Yangpu District helps Taiwan professionals settle down

Yangpu District took the lead in providing low-rent apartments for people from Taiwan who are working or starting businesses in its jurisdiction. 
Yang Meiping / SHINE

Peggi Yu from Taiwan sits in a low-rent apartment.

Arthur Lin and Peggi Yu have moved into low-rent apartments in Yangpu District since the district took the lead in providing such apartments for talent from Taiwan who are working or starting business in its jurisdiction.

Another four people have submitted applications and more than 30 are in the consultation process.

This is part of the city’s efforts to implement the country’s requirement to allow people from Taiwan to enjoy the same treatment as Chinese mainland citizens.

To apply for the apartments, people from Taiwan need to own at least 5 percent of a startup or hold an employment contract of longer than two years. They also have to submit social security payment certification.

Like Chinese mainland citizens, they can enjoy the new policy that reduces the requirement on security payment history from one year to one month, which greatly lowers the threshold for applicants.

A 30 percent discount from the original rent price is also available, and applicants are required to rent the apartment for at least one year. The whole process takes about 10 days.

Peggi Yu rented a two-bedroom apartment that costs her 5,200 yuan (US$821) per month inside a clean and well-managed residential complex. She submitted her application before Spring Festival and moved in one week ago.

“I was so surprised that the process was so quick and the apartment is so new, clean and well-decorated,” she said. “I don’t have to buy any furniture and only had to bring my luggage in.”

Yu worked in Beijing for six years and moved to Shanghai last year. She used to rent an apartment near her workplace in Wujiaochang that cost her almost 8,000 yuan a month, far beyond the subsidy the company provides.

Now she doesn’t have to pay any rent money herself, because her company covers the whole amount.

“When I posted the pictures of the apartment on WeChat, all my friends gave me 'thumbs up' and are envious of me,” Yu laughed.

“I think the government program is very helpful, especially for those of us who are newcomers,” she added. “It’s time-consuming and expensive for us to rent an apartment via agencies. I have recommended the program to my friends in Taiwan and hope it can help them if they come to work in Shanghai.”

Fan Chin-ling, the company boss, said he would apply for one more apartment for other employees from Taiwan.

Arthur Lin, a former senior executive of an IT company and now a business starter, also rents a one-bedroom apartment via the program for about 2,600 yuan per month, nearly half the price of the apartment he rented by himself.

The district, a demonstration zone for innovation and entrepreneurship, has 944 apartments for outstanding professionals, more than 70 percent of which have been rented.

With a large number of universities, the district also hosts nearly 1,500 students from Taiwan, about half of all the Taiwanese students studying at the city's universities.

The district has introduced a series of policies to help young professionals from Taiwan to settle down in Shanghai.

Mark Yuan, a student of Fudan University who has stared up a company in the district, submitted an application in September last year and now receives 800 yuan per month in housing subsidies.

Yang Meiping / SHINE

Arthur Lin's low-rent apartment

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