China Laws and Regulations Update in February 2020

1.Foreigner Permanent Residence Regulations of the People’s Republic of China (Draft Version)

Published by the Ministry of Justice

Publication date: 27 February 2020

Draft Version clearly states that the foreign permanent resident’s identity card is the identity document of foreign permanent residents in China. Foreign permanent residents with this document can do and none of relevant organizations and their staff can prevent them from doing certain activities. Draft Version sets out the eligibility for foreigners applying for permanent residence in China. For instance, foreigners who have made globally recognized achievements in economics, science and technology, education, culture, health, sports and other areas can apply for permanent residence application directly. Foreigners who have made significant contribution to China’s economic and social development and obtained recommendation of relevant government authority or the provincial, autonomous region or municipality government may apply for permanent residence. Foreigners who are needed for the national economic and social development such as urgently needed talents introduced into state key industries and areas and recommended by relevant regulatory authority may apply for permanent residence application. Draft Version provides that the foreigner wanting to obtain permanent residence in China should file a permanent residence application to the exit and entry administration affiliated with the public security department of the place where the applicant lives. The applicant should ensure information contained in the application form is true, submit photos of their passport or other international travel document or of specific standards and other documents, attend an interview and give their human identification information such as fingerprint. Foreign permanent residents cannot stay in China for less than three months every year. According to Draft Version, foreign permanent residents can use the entry and exit passages only for Chinese citizens, buy commercial houses in China by relevant rules for personal use or to live in, pay and use public housing funds by public housing fund management rules. Foreigners with permanent residence in the specific age group or their accompanying children who have not reached adulthood can receive compulsory education in China and only need to pay mandatory fees. (Source: Website of the Ministry of Justice)   

2.Notice of the General Office of the State Council on Implementing the Amended Securities Law

Published by the General Office of the State Council

Published document number: G.B.F.[2020] No.5

Publication date: 29 February 2020

Notice suggests steadily implementing the public securities issuance registration system. First, the reform in the public share issuance registration system should be performed step by step. CSRC should work with other relevant departments to further improve STAR market related rules, increase transparency of the registration approval system and optimize the operation procedures, study and make the overall plan for applying the public share issuance registration system to the second board market of Shenzhen Securities Exchange on an experimental basis, actively create opportunities to put forward plans for carrying out the public share issuance registration system on other securities exchange board markets and the state council approved national securities exchanges. The plans shall be subject to the state council approval.

Notice clearly states that punishment actions should be legally taken against securities related illegal activities. More intensive action should be taken against fraud issuance, inappropriate disclosure, non-performance of the duty of diligence or manipulation as an agent, insider transactions, securities transactions using information unknown to the general public and other acts that seriously disturbs the market order. Greater efforts should be made to improve the connection between law enforcement and criminal law administration, information sharing and reporting procedures and the efficiency of handover, investigation and examination procedures.

It is noted in Notice that relevant rules should be sorted and improved more quickly. CSRC, MOJ and other authorities should sort securities law related administrative rules and give advice on change of these rules in time. Relevant departments should work hard to sort relevant rules, work on the establishment, amendment and interpretation of relevant rules and streamline the transition between new and old policies according to new requirements of the amended securities law. (Source: Website of the State Council) 

3.Opinions of the Supreme People’s Court, the Supreme People’s Procuratorate, the Ministry of Public Security and the Ministry of Justice on Taking Legal Action Againstthe Crime of Jeopardizing COVID-19 Prevention and Control

Published by the Supreme People’s Court

Published document number: F.F.[2020] No.7

Publication date: 10 February 2020

In the epidemic crisis people in some areas are doing illegal activities such as refusing to take epidemic control measures, using violence to hurt doctors, producing and selling fake products, raising prices unreasonably, gossiping, seriously affecting the normal work on epidemic control. Opinions connected with existing laws increases the effectiveness of the legal system for epidemic control. Opinions clearly states that the act of deliberately infecting other people with COVID-19 in certain circumstances is convicted of the crime of damaging the public safety in a dangerous way. Opinions clearly states that severe action should be taken against the acts of producing or selling fake products or unreasonably raising prices of items used for epidemic prevention and control. Opinions further states that the act of illegally buying what is or should be known as state-key precious endangered wild animals or products made from such animals to eat or for other purposes could be convicted of the crime of illegally buying precious endangered wild animals or products made from such animals in criminal law. Opinions also states that severe legal action should be taken against the crimes of using violence to hurt doctors, fraud, group robbery, gossiping, negligence in performing the duty of epidemic prevention and control, bribery and misappropriation, damaging transport facilities and jeopardizing epidemic control. Opinions clearly requires that epidemic related crimes committed during the epidemic control period be considered as aggravated crimes in order to meet the strict requirement, severely punish and defer criminals, assert the authority of law, keep our society in good order and protect life and health of the people. (Source: Website of the Supreme People’s Court)

4.Notice of the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security, the Ministry of Finance and the State Administration of Taxation on Temporary Reduction and Exemption of the Social Insurance Premium Payable by Companies

Published by the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security

Published document number: R.S.B.F.[2020] No.11

Publication date: 20 February 2020

From February 2020 provinces, autonomous regions, municipalities (except Hubei Province) and Xinjiang Production and Construction Corp (collectively called “Provinces”) can exempt medium and small businesses from paying three of the company’s social insurance contributions for no more than five months and give large businesses and other applicable organizations (not including government authorities) 50% discount on three of the company’s social insurance contributions for no more than three months according to the impact of the epidemic and the financial conditions of the social insurance fund. (Source: Website of the State Council)

5.Notice of the State Council’s Joint Prevention and Control Mechanism on Coping with COVID-19 on Publishing the Guide to Epidemic Prevention and Control Measures for Organizations Resuming Work and Production

Published by the State Council’s Joint Prevention and Control Mechanism on Coping with COVID-19

Published document number: G.F.M.D.[2020] No.4

Publication date: 22 February 2020                                

It is noted in Guide that each organization should be well acquainted with their responsibilities for epidemic control and appropriately deal with unexpected incidents. Principal managers are the first to be responsible for epidemic control and should be well acquainted with emergency measures and operation procedures for epidemic control. There must be a quarantine and observation area in each organization. People with suspicious symptoms should be immediately taken to and temporarily kept in that area, reported to the local disease control department and taken to a nearby hospital according to relevant requirements. People with suspicious symptoms and their job positions and living rooms should be immediately quarantined and their workplaces such as offices, workshops and living places such as living rooms for staff members may be closed if necessary according to medical observation results. In addition, places and items they used should be disinfected on professional advice. Appropriate action should be taken to deal with known incidents. Organizations where one or more cases are found should carry out the epidemic control strategy to prevent the spread of the disease within and from their premises and work harder to perform epidemiological investigation of confirmed cases, track people who have been in close contact with the patient, disinfect affected areas, etc. Organizations where a lot of cases are found should carry out the epidemic control strategy to prevent the spread of the disease within and from their premises and if the epidemic is serious enough, close their premises temporarily until they can resume production after the epidemic is under control. (Source: Website of the State Council)

6.Notice of the Supreme People’s Court on Improving and Regulating Online Proceedings During the Period of COVID-19 Prevention and Control

Published by the Supreme People’s Court

Document number: F. (2020) No.49

Publication date: 18 February 2020                                

Notice sets out rules relating to online proceedings. First, rules regarding online identity authentication ensure that the identity of each party in the action is true and the “person, case and account number” agree with each other. Second, rules regarding online case filing require courts review the online case filing application within seven days after receipt of the application and approve the application in time if it complies with law. Third, rules regarding online mediation requires all courts are encouraged to resolve disputes through the online mediation platform. Fourth, in rules regarding document submission parties involved may not submit original hard copies of the documents after submission and court acceptance of the electronic forms of the documents and courts should give the parties involved a platform and technical support for them to submit electronic documents. Fifth, rules regarding online hearings require all courts decide whether to hold an online hearing by taking into consideration technology, details of the case, wishes of the parties involved and other factors and in what case online hearings are not applicable. Sixth, in rules regarding online trials qualified judges can review electronic files, discuss cases with others, write and submit legal instruments, etc. on the internet. Seventh, rules regarding application of electronic service set out conditions on which electronic service is applicable, forms of electronic service and in what event electronic service becomes effective. Eighth, rules regarding online legal services require courts upgrade the online legal service platform in all respects, expand online legal service functions and ensure that people can use comprehensive legal services at home. (Source: Website of the Supreme People’s Court)


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