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Last Updated: January 31, 2024

Hong Kong Work Visa

Hong Kong is a beautiful country to work and live in, offering a satisfying abroad experience. Work visas are however difficult to obtain with many vacancies being filled by local immigrants and professionals. However, with the right set of qualifications and proper research, one can bag the opportunity to work and settle down in this diverse country.

Hong Kong The work permit issued to skilled foreign professionals comes under the Employment for Professionals scheme of the country. There is no limit to the number of visas, and these permits are issued to individuals based on the assessment of their qualifications and specific skill sets that are not possessed by Hong Kong local citizens. So if someone is highly qualified and the country has a shortage of their specific skills, getting a work visa will not be an issue for them. There are multiple categories under which one (or their sponsor) can apply.

Types of Work Visas and Their Eligibility

Below is a list of visas that allow individuals to work in Hong Kong:

General Employment Policy (GEP)

Under this policy, individuals who have unique abilities, know-how, or experience that is valuable to Hong Kong but not readily available there can apply for this type of visa to work in the nation. The eligibility criteria for the policy are as follows:

Admission Scheme for Mainland Talents and Professionals (ASMTP)

This policy is limited to Chinese Mainland residents only, but it is identical to GEP. The program is open to anyone with special skills, knowledge, or experience that is valuable to Hong Kong but not easily accessible there. The eligibility requirements are the same as those of GEP.

Immigration Arrangements for Non-Local Graduates (IANG)

This program is open to recent or former non-local students who completed a full-time, locally accredited program leading to an undergraduate degree or higher, as well as graduates of the GBA campus.

Quality Migration Admission Scheme (QMAS)

To increase Hong Kong's economic competitiveness, this program is designed to attract highly skilled and talented individuals to relocate there. The qualified candidates may enter the nation without first obtaining a letter of employment offer from a local employer.

To receive points under either of the two point-based tests the General Points Test or the Achievement-based Points Test applicants must first meet a series of prerequisites. These prerequisites are as follows:

Technology Talent Admission Scheme (TechTAS)

TechTAS is a fast-track arrangement to get talented non-local workers to HKSAR (Hong Kong Special Administrative Region). The sponsoring company has to apply for a quote and then the skilled professional has to submit credentials (Graduates from the top 100 Universities of the world may get extra preference). A company allotted a quota by the Innovation and Technology Commission (ITC) can accordingly sponsor a person they consider eligible to apply for an employment visa for a 12-month validity period. Eligibility for employment under TechTAS is favorably considered if:

Top Talent Pass Scheme (TTPS)

The TTPS aims to draw top talent to Hong Kong who has a wealth of work experience and strong academic credentials. High earners and alumni from the best universities in the world are among the elite talent. The following are the eligibility requirements for this scheme:

Admission Scheme for the Second Generation of Chinese Hong Kong Permanent Residents (ASSG)

This scheme allows second-generation Chinese Hong Kong residents from overseas to return to work in Hong Kong. Citizens of Korea, Cuba, and Afghanistan are not eligible for this program. The eligibility criteria for this scheme are as follows:

Enhanced Supplementary Labour Scheme (Formerly known as Supplementary Labour Scheme)

Through the Elementary Supplementary Labour Scheme, employers who are having trouble filling positions locally can import labor from outside of Hong Kong. Employers must first seek approval in principle from LD's Supplementary Labour Division. The following qualifying requirements must be met by the applicant:

Sector-specific Labour Importation Schemes

This plan is similar to ESLS, with the exception that it only covers a few specific industries. Employers that wish to import foreign labor because there is a shortage of domestic labor must first apply to the relevant departments or bureaus for quota(s). Citizens of Afghanistan, Cuba, Laos, Korea, Nepal, and Vietnam are not eligible for these schemes. The prerequisites are the same as for ESLS.

Special Scheme to Import Care Workers for Residential Care Homes

Through this program, which is run by the government's Social Welfare Department, operators of RCHs who are having trouble finding qualified caregivers locally can import caregivers from outside of Hong Kong. For quotas, the employer must work with the Contract Management Section.

Working Holiday Scheme

The purpose of this scheme is to promote educational and cultural exchanges between Hong Kong and the participating nations. The applicant may accept a temporary job offer under this scheme while on vacation in Hong Kong.

Cost of Hong Kong Work Visa

The price of filing for a new work visa and requesting an extension of an existing one is HK$230. The Service charge for supplying, on application, a copy of any document, or for making or forwarding, or both, a request or recommendation to any authority of a foreign state, for consular or nationality registration or the issue or renewal of a passport or other travel document or of a document of identity or for the grant of a visa or entry permit is HK$260.

Steps to Apply for Hong Kong Work Visa

Ascertain the Appropriate Visa Program

The applicant must first select one of the visa schemes listed above based on the purpose of their visit to Hong Kong. The candidate must also confirm that they fulfill the requirements for the program they select.

Gathering the Documents and Beginning the Application Process

The documentation needed may change depending on their home country and the kind of scheme the applicant wishes to apply for. The documents listed below do not apply to every type of visa scheme. It is advised that applicants review the specific requirements for the visa program they have chosen. Upon obtaining the necessary paperwork, candidates can start the visa application process. The application form must be filled out and signed by the applicant and sent to the Hong Kong Immigration Department, Hong Kong Embassy, or Consular by mail or in person. They also need to pay the necessary fee when applying.

Waiting for the Decision

The candidate must wait for the Hong Kong Immigration Department's decision after submitting their application. It could take four to eight weeks to receive the decision. Depending on the kind of scheme they have applied for, it might take even longer. Following acceptance of the application, the candidate can book a flight to Hong Kong.

Renewing the Work Visa

If a person's job contract in Hong Kong is longer than the duration of the visa that was initially issued, they can extend it. They have to apply for a visa extension roughly four weeks prior to the visa's expiration date. The procedure for renewing a visa is fairly easy. Before applying for an extension, the candidate must determine if they qualify. These requirements for eligibility might change depending on the program they work for. After that, they must gather the necessary paperwork and deliver it, together with the necessary fees, to the Immigration Department.

If an employee wishes to change companies, they must obtain approval from the Immigration Department by submitting an Application for Change of Employment.
Documents Required for Visa Renewal Application:

Hong Kong Visa for Dependents

Individuals who have been approved for a work visa under the GEP have the option to bring their spouse and/or their children to Hong Kong under their dependent policy. People who have a work visa or have applied for the same will have to be the sponsor of their dependents. The following factors may favor the dependent applicants: Documents Needed for Dependent Visa
The application process requires the applicant to have the following documents:

Some Things to Remember

Work Visa