Applying for Passports in China
The People’s Republic of China passport is the primary travel document for Chinese citizens who are traveling abroad for business or personal reasons. Although Macau and Hong Kong are now part of China, they still hold different types of passports. This is under their “One Country, Two Systems” Principle.
In the past, the Chinese passport had a five-year validity period. However, since 2007, it has become valid for ten years for holders who are 16 years or older. Chinese passports are up to date with technology, as they are machine-readable. The information contained in them is in English and simplified Chinese.
Passports differ, depending on the holder’s purpose and position. A diplomatic passport is given to diplomats, officials, consuls, heads of state, and delegation members who need to go abroad for national purposes. The spouses and children of members of the diplomatic community are also issued this type of passport.
A regular passport is for other citizens who are going abroad for reasons like travel and private affairs. On the other hand, an official or service passport is given to government officials, staff who work for consulates and embassies abroad, as well as their children and spouses.
The most important requirement when applying for a Chinese passport is proof of your Chinese nationality. The “Nationality Law” of the country states that dual nationalities are not recognized. Anyone who wants to apply for a passport must be naturalized first and surrender any other foreign nationalities.
Chinese nationals living in other countries may consult the Chinese embassy or consulate in that country regarding the necessary documents, and schedule an interview with the officers.
In both cases, the documents you need include the original and the photocopy of the certificates of your Chinese nationality, a valid certificate of residence issued by the government of the country you are in or other identity certificates of your lawful status, your completed application form, and other supplementary documents required by the officers.
If you are a Taiwanese going to China, do not expect your passport to be stamped. The People’s Republic of China (PRC) does not acknowledge Taiwan as a sovereign state. China usually issues permits that are to be collected in Hong Kong or Macau. The Taiwanese government, on the other hand, requires their residents who travel to China to acquire an official approval first. Neither country stamps passports from the other side.
China’s other territories like the Special Administrative Regions of Hong Kong and Macau can issue their own passports for Chinese nationals. These are special kinds of PRC passports. If you learn from this article, you surely be interested in reading the Top Ten kinds of Passport used today.