China to further ease visa policies in Hainan
In addition to the existing visa-free policy covering tourists from 59 countries, greater efforts will be made to ease visa policies for foreigners travelling to and working in south China's island province of Hainan, the Ministry of Public Security announced Wednesday.
The move is among a series of preferential policies and measures focusing on three industrial types -- high technologies, tourism and modern services -- to be introduced for supporting the construction of the Hainan pilot free trade zone and a free trade port with Chinese characteristics, according to an MPS press conference.
Among the measures is an expanded scope of visa-free entry purposes, with foreigners to be allowed to enter Hainan visa-free for business, visit, relative visit, medical treatment, exhibition, sports and other purposes, said Qu Yunhai, deputy head of the National Immigration Administration, a government body administrated by the MPS.
Qu said foreign technical and skilled personnel employed in Hainan might be granted work residence permits with a period of validity consistent with their work contracts.
Arrangements will also be made to facilitate foreign students with master's degrees or above from Chinese higher education institutions to apply for residence permits in Hainan if they are engaged in innovation activities or starting businesses, he said.
The MPS also unveiled measures to facilitate people from overseas to drive vehicles in Hainan.
Wang Qiang, deputy head of the traffic management bureau of the MPS, said foreign nationals with foreign motor vehicle driving licenses could directly apply for temporary driving licenses for cars in Hainan.
For those staying in China for more than three months, the term of validity of their temporary driving permits is extended from a maximum of three months to one year, but not exceeding the validity period of their visas, Wang said.