FINALLY some good news for many expats stranded outside of China
If you have a valid residence permit for work, personal matter(Q) or reunion(S) then you can return to China starting from Monday September 28 00:00am without having to apply for an extra entry visa / PU invitation letter. However, if your residence permit expired after March 28th 2020 00:00am(when China started the travel ban), then you can apply for a new one at your local Chinese embassy/consulate, given you still have the same job or personal matters or family members waiting for you in China.
I assume you still need all relevant documents i.e. a written statement from your company with a company chop. Therefore, if your residence permit falls under one of the three categories, then you won’t need to go through the tedious and unrewarding process of getting a PU invitation letter anymore.
Of course, since these policies are changing all the time, have gray areas or [insert any reason], please do your due diligence and confirm with your local consulate/embassy.
For those interested, the English translation(unofficial) and the official announcement in Chinese(with link to the page on Ministry of Foreign Affairs) can be found below.
And, sorry, no updates on other types of residence permits, such as residence permits for study permits. I assume tourist visas will most likely be the last type of visas to be allowed entry into China (my guess is towards end of 2021 or sometime in 2022, once the vaccine is readily available).
If I come across any more clarity / confirmation, I will share the updates on this page.
In the meantime, I hope all of you, your friends and family are nourishing your mental and physical health!
“In view of the current COVID-19 situation and the need of epidemic prevention and control, adjustments are now made to the Announcement by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the National Immigration Administration on the Temporary Suspension of Entry by Foreign Nationals Holding Valid Chinese Visas or Residence Permits issued on 26 March 2020.
Effective from 0 a.m., 28 September 2020, foreign nationals holding valid Chinese residence permits for work, personal matters and reunion are allowed to enter China with no need for applying for new visas. If the above three categories of residence permits held by foreign nationals expired after 0 a.m., 28 March 2020, the holders may apply for relevant visas by presenting the expired residence permits and relevant materials to the Chinese embassies or consulates on the condition that the purpose of the holders’visit to China remains unchanged. The above-mentioned personnel shall strictly abide by the Chinese regulations on epidemic prevention and control.
Other measures in the Announcement issued on March 26 will continue to be implemented. While ensuring effective epidemic control, the Chinese government will continue resuming people-to-people exchanges in a step-by-step and orderly manner.
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
of the People’s Republic of China
National Immigration Administration
of the People’s Republic of China “
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