While people entering mainland China are required to have a visa, Hong Kong is an entirely separate travel section that has very business-friendly plans.People from more than 170 countries can enter Hong Kong visa-free. However, this has a limitation of 7-180 days.
Requirements for a working visa
To live or work in Hong Kong, foreigners are required to have a visa. However, Hong Kong has a unique visa policy that allows short term visitors to conduct business and work on contracts on an entry permit or visitor’s visa.
Visa types in Hong Kong
To be allowed to employ people from abroad, Hong Kong requires that you demonstrate that the skills and knowledge being sought cannot be got in Hong Kong. Such an employee has to be sponsored by the employer.
- Register and set up a company that you are the main shareholder
- Invest in any of Hong Kong established companies
If you opt to invest in an existing company, proof of details of personal financial position/viability of investing will be required.
To get this visa, you need to be a partner or a proprietor of a start-up company or be the main researcher in a pertinent project. The start-up business of focus must be supported through a government programme with a rigorous selection process. Here is an example.
- Cyberport Incubation Programme
- Enterprise Support Scheme administered by the Innovation and Technology Commission.
- Design Incubation Programme administered by the Hong Kong Design Centre.
Capital Investment Entrant Scheme (CIES)
CIES was suspended in January 2015 but the department continued to process all the applications that had been made earlier. If you want to follow on CIES, you have to refer to the immigrations department website.
After successfully applying for a Hong Kong visa, you are free to bring a spouse or dependent children under the age of 18 years. A spouse with a dependant visa can hold any lawful employment in Hong Kong.
Additional enhancement measures have been included in the General Employment Policy, the Admission Scheme for Mainland Talents and Professionals, as well as the Quality Migrant Admission Centre.
Besides, Immigration Department has also commenced a pilot scheme for admitting 2nd generation of Chinese Hong Kong permanent residents after migrating overseas.
Hong Kong Identity Card
The law requires all Hong Kong residents who are over 11 years to carry their identity cards at all times.
This also applies to people who have permission to stay for more than 180 days. This means that if you have a working visa or investment visa, you need to apply for an identity card. The application is very simple and free.
In Hong Kong, the Employment Ordinances outlines the minimum payments for employees such as statutory holiday, compulsory provident fund, and maternity leave. An employer has to take appropriate compensation cover for the staff under the Employees Ordinances.