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Scheme Objective

The Scheme is a quota-based entrant scheme. It seeks to attract highly skilled or talented persons to settle in Hong Kong in order to enhance Hong Kong’s economic competitiveness. Successful applicants are not required to have secured an offer of local employment before their entry to Hong Kong for settlement. All applicants are required to fulfill a set of prerequisites before they can be awarded points under one of the two points-based tests, namely the General Points Test and Achievement-based points test and and compete for quota allocation with other applicants. Successful applicants under the Scheme may bring their spouse and unmarried dependent children under the age of 18 to Hong Kong provided that they are capable of supporting and accommodating their dependants on their own financial resources without relying on public assistance in Hong Kong.

Scope of the Scheme

The Scheme is not applicable to nationals of Afghanistan, Cuba, Laos, Korea (Democratic People’s Republic of), Nepal and Vietnam.

Selection Mechanism

Stage 1: Prerequisites

All applicants under the Scheme are required to fulfill a set of prerequisites before they can be awarded points under one of the two points-based tests under the Scheme.

Stage 2: Points-based test

Applicants who have met all the prerequisites may choose to be assessed either under the General Points Test or Achievement-based Points Test. There are five point-scoring factors under the General Points Test and one point-scoring factor under the Achievement-based Points Test.
A minimum passing mark is set under the General Points Test. Persons who choose the Achievement-based Points Test are advised to assess whether their credentials are adequate to meet the minimum passing mark before submitting an application.

Stage 3: Selection exercise

Selection exercises will be done on a regular basis for quota allocation to applicants. During each selection exercise, applicants who satisfy both the prerequisites and the minimum passing mark (under the General Points Test) or the one point-scoring factor (under the Achievement-based Points Test) will be ranked according to scores awarded. High scoring applications will be short-listed for further assessment. The Director of Immigration may seek advice from the Advisory Committee on Admission of Quality Migrants and Professionals (the Advisory Committee) on the assessment, point-scoring and allocation of quota under the Scheme. The Advisory Committee comprises official and non-official members appointed by the Chief Executive of the HKSAR. The Advisory Committee will consider the socio-economic needs of Hong Kong, the sectoral mix of candidates and other relevant factors, and recommend to the Director of Immigration how best to allocate available quota in each selection exercise. Meeting the minimum passing mark or high-scoring applications do not necessarily secure quota allotment. Results of each selection exercise will be published on the Immigration Department website. As it takes time to process applications, applicants may regard their applications as being under processing unless they receive a notification of refusal from the Immigration Department.

Stage 4: Approval-in-principle

Applicants who are allotted a quota in the selection exercise will be issued with an Approval-in-principle letter. Such applicants are required to come to Hong Kong to attend an interview in person and present originals of all documents submitted during the application to the Immigration Department for verification. They may enter Hong Kong on visitor conditions for this purpose. The issue of an Approval-in-principle letter to an applicant does not automatically guarantee approval of his/her entry to or remain in Hong Kong under the Scheme.

Stage 5: Issue of visa/entry permit

If all original documents are satisfactorily verified and all relevant application procedures are finalized, successful applicants will be issued with a visa/entry permit under the Scheme for staying in Hong Kong.

Prerequisites

All applicants must satisfy all of the following prerequisites:

• Age

The applicant must be aged 18 or above when lodging an application under the Scheme.

• Financial requirement

The applicant must be able to demonstrate that he/she is capable of supporting and accommodating himself/herself and his/her dependants, if any, on his/her own financial resources without relying on public assistance during his/her stay in Hong Kong.

• Good character

The applicant should not have any criminal record or adverse immigration record in Hong Kong or elsewhere.

• Language proficiency

The applicant should be proficient in written and spoken Chinese (Putonghua or Cantonese) or English.

• Basic educational qualification

The applicant must have a good education background, normally a first degree from a recognized university or a tertiary educational institution. In special circumstances, good technical qualifications, proven professional abilities and/or experience and achievements supported by documentary evidence may be considered.
If the applicant fails to provide satisfactory supporting documents showing that he/she meets all the above prerequisites, his/her application will not be processed further and will be refused immediately.

Important Notice

The Director of Immigration has absolute discretion to award points under the two points-based tests to applicants as the Director thinks fit and to approve or refuse any application without giving any reason. The Scheme or details of the Scheme may also be subject to change as the Director thinks fit without prior notice.