Q&A on exit-entry for foreigners in China during epidemic

(chinadaily.com.cn)Updated : 2020-02-10


Questions and Answers by National Immigration Administration Concerning Immigration and Exit-Entry Administration during the Period of Prevention and Control on Pneumonia caused by Novel Coronavirus

Question: Are foreigners allowed to entry or exit as usual during the period of epidemic prevention and control?

Answer: The Chinese government has taken a series of strong measures since the outbreak of pneumonia caused by novel coronavirus. As President Xi Jinping stated, China has full confidence and capability to win the battle against the novel coronavirus outbreak. At present, except for the lockdown of the exit channel of Wuhan ports, all port visa agencies are operating as usual. Visa-free transit policy for foreigners are still effective. All land, sea and air ports of China are functioning. Foreigners can enter or exit as usual with their valid international travel documents.

At present, it is helpful to the epidemic prevention and control by reducing cross border movements. Foreigners could make reasonable travel arrangements to China and stay or reside in China as usual. Due to entry restrictions adopted by some countries and regions, it is advised that foreigners who need to exit from China, should learn in advance entry requirements of destination countries or regions to avoid financial and time losses in case of any entry refusals. Those who travel to countries or regions without entry restrictions, are advised to arrive at exit ports well ahead of departure time for necessary checks. Foreigners having fever with symptoms of acute respiratory infection such as cough or breathing difficulties, should avoid international travels and seek immediate medical treatment at the nearest hospitals. Information such as recent activities as well as close contacts should be provided to relevant authorities for any necessary control measures.

Questions: How do foreigners apply for visas, stay or residence permits during the period of epidemic prevention and control?

Answer: All exit-entry administration (EEA) authorities in China will be in full service for extension and issuance of visa and stay or residence permits to ensure foreigners' legitimate stay in China. Urgent services for emergency situations will also be provided.. To avoid crowds gathering risks, the EEA authorities will make arrangements for services on appointments. Foreigners could make appointments in advance for any applications. For those institutions which host high numbers of foreigners, such as universities, scientific research institutes and business enterprises, the EEA authorities will allow additional agent service or provide other necessary conveniences depending upon the situation.

Question: How to deal with the situation that a foreigner's visa, stay or residence permit expires during the epidemic prevention and control?

Answer: According to Exit and Entry Administration Law of the PRC, foreigners should exit China or apply for extension at the EEA authorities before the visa, stay or residence permit expires. In light of the relevant laws and regulations and current situation, those who are unable to exit as scheduled or extend the visas, stay or residence permits due to the reason of epidemic prevention and control shall be given a lighter or mitigated or be exempted from punishment by the EEA authorities depending upon circumstances.

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