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Hong Kong Immigration

Hong Kong Falls To 18th Position in Int’l Talent Attraction

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Hong Kong Falls To 18th Position in Int’l Talent AttractionA global study, done by the Institute for Management Development based in Switzerland, revealed that Hong Kong was fall down from 12th position to 18th position in its competitiveness to attract and foster talents internationally. The same study attributed the fall partly to unimpressive public investment in education.

Looking at how Hong Kong compares with other countries in the same region; Singapore maintains its position from last year, 13th, Taiwan at 27th place and China occupies the 39th position, it has fallen behind Singapore. Switzerland stands top of the log, followed by Denmark and Norway respectively.

The Institute for Management Development used three criteria in the ranking: investment and development of homegrown talents, skills and competencies availability in the talent pool, and the extent to which a country attracts talent from overseas. Hong Kong dropped in all.

Hong Kong’s Response

Responding to the drop, Chief Executive Carrie Lam said she is yet to establish the date of the information used in making the ranking.  According to her, it might be a picture of situations of things a year ago; hence not reflective of the huge investment the government has made in education this term.

Lam revealed that education expenditure has been increased by about 10% by her government. A total recurrent expenditure of HK$8.3 billion had been invested across preschool, primary, secondary and tertiary education. She affirmed that education is the best investment any government can make as it is a sure way to nurture talents; hence existing arrangements will be reviewed to achieve quality education.

Jeffrey Lam, a lawmaker representing the business sector, believes the new plans by the government will attract talent to Hong Kong. Yet, he said the country has to do better in immigration policy, tax and leisure facilities in order to get the talents attracted to remain in the country for long.

To get your possible Immigration options, approach ImmigrationNews now, and we will also evaluate your profile with our Immigration experts and advise you whether you are qualified to apply or not.

Hong Kong to Tighten Tour Guide Rules after Mega Bridge Opens

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Hong Kong to Tighten Tour Guide Rules after Mega Bridge OpensHong Kong is making quick progress in setting up stiffer restrictions for tour guides. This move became inevitable after holidaymakers, believed to be led by illegal agents from mainland China flooded Tung Chung.

In recent times, Lantau Island (a usually quiet town) has been heavily swamped by tourists. This development has been linked directly to the opening of a mega-bridge – Cross Border Bridge to Zhuhai and Macau. Henceforth, after bill passing in consideration before the city’s legislature, it will be a criminal offense for any guide to operate without license because some guides have been accused of breaching employment laws which do not allow mainlanders to work in Hong Kong.

Over the past two weeks, serious tensions were observed between the locals and visitors as thousands of people from mainland flooded Tung Chung after crossing the new bridge. Scenes like this were also witnessed in the past by other border towns. In fact, arrests were made when a clash broke out during a protest by locals.

The executive director of Hong Kong’s Travel Industry Council, Alice Chan Cheung Lok-yee said only 100 mainland group tours (comprising about 3,000 tourists) registered with local agents to operate in Hong Kong last Sunday. This happened to be 6% of the total number of tourists that crossed the bridge on the same day.

Rule Of Engagement for Tour Guides

Existing laws do not allow any non-locals to provide services that have to do with accommodation arrangement, sightseeing or transportation without a licensed Hong Kong tour agent.

Any tour agent from the mainland that is only involved in the arrangement of cross-border transport without interfering with travellers’ itinerary does not need to apply for a license.

Operators have been demanded to follow laws in Hong Kong as illegal mainland tourists have become a great concern according to the Department of Culture and Tourism in Guangdong Province.

The Travel Industry Bill will be pushed to get a second reading before the year runs out according to the Hong Kong Tourism Commission.

To get your possible Immigration options, approach ImmigrationNews now, and we will also evaluate your profile with our Immigration experts and advise you whether you are qualified to apply or not.

Hong Kong Confronts Its Own Transient And Refugee Crisis

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Hong Kong confronts its own transient and refugee crisisHong Kong manages its own particular transient issues. The city confronts vagrant issues of its own with cases from haven seekers having dramatically multiplied in the last two years as per the Hong Kong Immigration news. The quantity of stateless kids destined to be exiles is developing in Hong Kong, where applications and requests from refuge seekers have dramatically multiplied in the most recent two years, causing a crisis.

While Europe is dealing with its own variant of refugee crisis, with a flood of individuals seeking to escape the ongoing civil war in Syria and seeking shelter in Europe, haven seekers from other Asian countries, for example, India, Bangladesh, Vietnam and Pakistan and Africa as well, are rushing to Hong Kong, seeking to relocate there.  In any case, NGO’s and human right activists blame the rising numbers on the authorities dawdling over applications and endorsing the same.  Hong Kong has endorsed only 1% out of the 8500 applications they had received, following 2009. Currently, there are more than twelve thousand immigrants, seeking haven in Hong Kong and have been waiting for more than fifteen years, for endorsement from the Government.

Given the current spiraling numbers, the number of stateless citizens and refugee seekers to local citizens has been increasing disproportionately for the last few years. While the current government in Hong Kong is trying to grapple with their vagrant problem, the fact is that the government does have a provision for clothing and feeding these transients and refugees but it nevertheless poses a huge burden on government. As it stands, the legislature in Hong Kong also ensures that children of these stateless citizens are educated by providing them with a partial scholarship. But since one cannot obtain a work permit as a stateless citizen, a transient cannot afford to pay the remainder of the school fees therefore most of their children go uneducated.

The UN was extremely sarcastic of Hong Kong’s actions in preventing refugees and other transients from working and pointing out the obvious that this is one of the reason why a few of them turn to petty crimes. Irrespective of the fact that Hong Kong did overhaul its refugee screening system, the fact is that it is only lead to more applicants for residency status and slow processing of the applications is only further compounding what was already a bad situation. Unless Hong Kong can find a way to resolve this issue soon, within the framework of their constitution, the situation is bound to have a long term impact. As it stands, the current crisis has already led to Hong Kong implementing a few changes with regard to their immigration policy.

Hong Kong plans to Double 2015 Quotas for its Working Holiday Visa Program

in Hong Kong Immigration/Immigration by

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The Special Administrative Region of Hong Kong has just concluded an agreement with the French government to expand the quota from last year for the Working Holiday program (WHS) from 200 to 400; an outcome that’s eagerly awaited by both Hong Kong citizens and French citizens alike.

Mr. Matthew Cheung kin Chung, The secretary for work and welfare in HK, has expressed that since its inception in 2013, the WHS between France and Hong Kong has given young people from both sides an opportunity, to expand their perception about each other. This program has enabled young professionals, both in France and Hong Kong to learn about each other’s culture while contributing to the local economy as they work and live in the host country for certain duration as part of the WHS program. Given the reception that WHS program has gotten from Hong Kong residents so far, it has been expanded and the government plans to extend the same to include other age groups, and even incorporate an exchange visa program of sorts.

Hong Kong’s teen and professionals between the ages of eighteen and thirty can apply for visa under the Working Holiday program and on successfully obtaining one they can visit France for a short duration for work and vacation. While the current program is open to all Hong Kong residents with HKSAR passport and or have a British overseas passport, they cannot apply for this visa if they had utilized the program earlier on. In other words, as residents they can apply for the WHS program only if they are applying for the same, for the first time and have not traveled to France.

The successful candidate, on getting his visa, can live in France up to 12 months and similarly, French citizens with valid passport can reside in Hong Kong for the same duration during which they can both work and study for pre-approved certified courses. Applicants must provide valid documentation when applying for the working vacation visa program. Most applicants are required to provide a detailed background, along with bank statements and a letter of intent along with copies of their HSKAR passport, Hong Kong ID card, along with two photos of themselves. They are also required to pre-book their airline tickets, including the return ticket or a statement indicating their intent to purchase a return ticket at a said date.

The HKSAR government has set up joint WHS programs with France initially and now the program has been expanded to include other nations like Germany, Korea, Australia, Japan, Canada, New Zealand, United Kingdom, and Ireland – to name a few.  Since 2001, more than Five thousand young Hong Kong residents have joined the WHS.

HKRAS ensures that its citizens are educated about the process, the terms and conditions of their visa, and that they are required to respect the laws of the host country during their course of stay there.

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