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Benefits for global talents working in Shanghai

(sh-italent.com)Updated : 2016-10-24

Overseas professionals in Shanghai, who have been introduced by the Thousand Talents Plan, a national program to bring in top global talents to the Chinese mainland, can enjoy benefits in 12 aspects of life, according to a guideline on preferential policies for top overseas talents issued by the Shanghai Municipal Government in 2015.

The aspects cover stay and entry-exit, residence, subsidiary, social insurance, medical insurance, housing, tax, customs clearance, spouse’s job and salary. The Shanghai Overseas Talent Service Center also set up a service window to ensure the implementation of those policies.

Stay and entry-exit

Overseas talents along with their spouses and minor children can apply for the Foreigner’s Permanent Residence Card and will receive it within 50 days, once their applications get approved. They can apply for a two to five-year multiple-entry F Visa, if they have to go abroad many times without getting the residence card yet. The talents can also apply for the Shanghai Residence Card B and Foreign Experts Certificate. 


Overseas top minds with Chinese citizenship as well as their returned spouses and children can get a Shanghai hukou (household registration), no matter where they registered before. The talents with foreign citizenship who are willing to be naturalized as Chinese citizens can enjoy priority in handling naturalization procedures and getting a Shanghai hukou. 


Those talented people can receive a fund of one million yuan ($154,000), granted by the city’s finance department and the institutions they work for. A total of 50 percent of the fund is granted on the basis of their work performance, while the remaining 50 percent is given to improve their living conditions. 

Social insurance

Talents and their spouses and children can enjoy Shanghai’s social insurance. Their spouses and children can enjoy the city’s medical insurance for urban residents, if they are unemployed. 

Medical insurance

Those people as well as their spouses and children can enjoy Shanghai’s medical service and medical insurance. Their companies will pay for their commercial health insurance. 


Overseas talents who are willing to buy houses in Shanghai can buy one apartment for their own use, following the policies on house purchasing for local residents. Their companies will offer them subsidies. As for those who do not buy apartments, their companies will provide them with an apartment to live that covers at least 150 square meters. People who rent can also get subsidies from their companies.


Overseas talents are eligible for individual income tax exemption on the subsidies granted by the national and the city’s governments when they come to work in Shanghai. They can also receive the privilege of five-year tax deduction on the allowances for housing, food, relocation, visiting relatives, and children’s education.

Customs clearance

After showing certain identification credentials, the talents can enjoy tax exemption on a small amount of imported goods for scientific or teaching purposes, or on a reasonable amount of articles that they take for everyday use, in Shanghai. They can also get an inspection-free privilege of their carry-on luggage under normal circumstances. 

Spouse’s job

Companies the talents work at shall offer jobs to their spouses. If the company cannot offer the job, it shall give them living allowances by reference to its average wage. 


The salary for the talents will be decided by reference to their overseas income and is unconstrained by the domestic salary system. Talents with outstanding contributions can enjoy incentives, such as getting share options, stock equity, and enterprise annuities.