Application for Renunciation of Chinese Nationality

Before Applying

Application for Renunciation of Chinese Nationality

Expand All
Introducton

Under the Nationality Law of the People's Republic of China (CNL), a Chinese citizen can apply for renunciation of his Chinese nationality if he can meet certain requirements.

Eligibility

Any person who meets the requirements laid down in Articles 10, 11 and 12 of the CNL can apply for renunciation of Chinese nationality.

Article 10

Chinese nationals who meet one of the following conditions may renounce Chinese nationality upon approval of their applications:

  • they are near relatives of foreign nationals;
  • they have settled abroad; or
  • they have other legitimate reasons

Article 11

Any person who applies for renunciation of Chinese nationality shall lose Chinese nationality upon approval of his application.

 Article 12

State functionaries and military personnel on active service shall not renounce Chinese nationality.

Nationality Law of the People’s Republic of China and the “Explanations”

 Other Requirements

If the applicant is a Chinese national, he/she can renounce his/her Chinese nationality if:

  • he/she is a Hong Kong resident or was a Hong Kong resident immediately before he/she emigrated to another country; and
  • he/she is of sound mind; and
  • he/she is the spouse or child of a foreign national and is required under the law of that country to renounce his/her Chinese nationality before he/she can be naturalised as a national of that country; or

he/she has emigrated to and settled in another country and is required by the law of that country to renounce his/her Chinese nationality before he/she can be naturalised as a national of that country; or

he/she has been adopted by a foreign national and is required under the law of his/her adoptive parent’s country to renounce his/her Chinese nationality before he/she can be naturalised as a national of that country.

Application may also be considered if the applicant has other legitimate reasons.

Consequences of Renunciation of Chinese Nationality in Relation to Right of Abode in the HKSAR

If the applicant chooses to renounce his/her Chinese nationality, it may affect his/her right of abode in the HKSAR.

Circumstances in which the applicant can continue to enjoy his/her right of abode in the HKSAR

The applicant will continue to enjoy his/her right of abode in Hong Kong after his/her application for renunciation of Chinese nationality has been approved, provided that:

(a) the applicant had the right of abode in Hong Kong before 1 July 1997, AND

  1. he/she was settled in Hong Kong immediately before 1 July 1997; or
  2. after he/she ceased to be settled in Hong Kong immediately before 1 July 1997, he/she returned to settle in Hong Kong within 18 months commencing on 1 July 1997; or
  3. after he/she ceased to be settled in Hong Kong immediately before 1 July 1997, he/she returned to settle in Hong Kong after the period of 18 months commencing on 1 July 1997 but only if he/she had been absent from Hong Kong for a continuous period of less than 36 months.

OR

(b) the applicant is able to meet the criteria applicable to a non-Chinese citizen

  1. he/she has entered Hong Kong with a valid travel document, has ordinarily resided in Hong Kong for a continuous period of not less than seven years and has taken Hong Kong as his/her place of permanent residence before or after the establishment of the HKSAR (the applicant is required to make a declaration in the form which the Director of Immigration stipulates that he/she has taken Hong Kong as his/her place of permanent residence); or
  2. he/she is under 21 years of age and was born in Hong Kong before or after the establishment of the HKSAR provided that at the time of his/her birth or any time thereafter before he/she attains the age of 21, one of his/her parents has the right of abode in Hong Kong (the applicant has to re-qualify for the right of abode as other foreign nationals do when he/she reaches the age of 21); or
  3. immediately before the establishment of the HKSAR, he/she had the right of abode in Hong Kong only

 Circumstances in which the applicant will lose his/her right of abode in the HKSAR

As a person not of Chinese nationality, the applicant will lose his/her right of abode in the HKSAR if:

  1. he/she has been absent from Hong Kong for a continuous period of not less than 36 months since he/she ceased to have ordinarily resided in Hong Kong, or
  2. being a person who before the establishment of the HKSAR had the right of abode in Hong Kong only, he/she has been absent from Hong Kong for a continuous period of not less than 36 months after he/she obtained the right of abode in any place other than Hong Kong and had ceased to be ordinarily resident in Hong Kong.

If the applicant loses his/her right of abode in Hong Kong, he/she will automatically acquire the right to land, which will enable him/her to enter the HKSAR freely and to work, study or live without any restriction on the condition of stay in Hong Kong. The applicant will also be able to re-acquire the right of abode if he/she subsequently satisfies the requirements applicable to a non-Chinese citizen in paragraph (b)1 above.

Meaning of Related Terms

The following definitions will help the applicant understand the conditions under which the right of abode is extended to foreign nationals.

Settled in Hong Kong

The applicant is settled in Hong Kong if:

  • The applicant is ordinarily resident in Hong Kong; and
  • he/she is not subject to any limit stay in Hong Kong.

 Ordinary residence

The applicant is ordinarily resident in Hong Kong if he/she remains in Hong Kong legally, voluntarily and for a settled purpose (such as for education, business, employment or residence etc.), whether of short or long duration.

The applicant shall not be treated as ordinarily resident in Hong Kong :

1. during any period in which he/she remains in Hong Kong -

  • with or without the authority of the Director of Immigration, after landing unlawfully; or
  • in contravention of any condition of stay; or
  • as a refugee; or while in detention pending determination of refugee status or removal; or
  • while employed as a contract worker, who is from outside Hong Kong, under a Government importation of labour scheme; or
  • while employed as a domestic helper who is from outside Hong Kong; or
    • as a member of a consular post within the meaning of the Consular Relations Ordinance; or
    • as a member of the Hong Kong Garrison; or
    • as a holder of a prescribed Central People's Government travel document; or
  1. during any period of imprisonment or detention pursuant to the sentence or order of any court.

 Parent and Child

The relationship of mother and child is considered to exist between a woman and any child born to her in or out of wedlock, but the relationship of father and child is considered to exist only between a man and a child born to him in wedlock (any child born out of wedlock and subsequently legitimised by the marriage of the child’s parents will be treated as if born in wedlock). In the case of adoption, the relationship of a parent and adopted child is considered to exist only if the child is adopted in Hong Kong in accordance with the Adoption Ordinance (Cap 290).

Important note

If the applicant is required to give up his/her Chinese nationality before he/she can acquire a foreign nationality, he/she should apply for renunciation of Chinese nationality.

If the applicant has already acquired foreign nationality with right of abode in that country and he/she wishes to be treated as a national of that country in the HKSAR, he/she should make a declaration of change of nationality to the HKSAR Immigration Department. Further information is available through the following link.

Application for Declaration of Change of Nationality

Frequently Asked Questions about Chinese Nationality

Applying

Application for Renunciation of Chinese Nationality

Expand All
Means of Application

The application should normally be made while the applicant is in Hong Kong. Applicants can submit their applications in person or by post to :

Nationality Sub-section
Travel Documents and Nationality (Application) Section
Immigration Department
4/F, Immigration Tower
7 Gloucester Road
Wan Chai
Hong Kong

Underpaid mail items will not be accepted by the Immigration Department. For proper delivery of your mail items, please ensure your mail items bear sufficient postage with return address before posting. (Details)

If the applicant is outside Hong Kong, he/she can send the application directly to the HKSAR Immigration Department at the above address or submit it in person to the nearest Chinese Diplomatic and Consular Mission.

Statement of Purpose for Data Collection

The personal data that the applicant is asked to provide in the application form will be used by the Immigration Department for one or more of the following purposes:

  • To process the applicant’s application for renunciation of Chinese nationality;
  • To administer the Nationality Law of the People’s Republic of China and the “Explanations of Some Questions by the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress Concerning the Implementation of the Nationality Law of the People’s Republic of China in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region” adopted by the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress on 15 May 1996;
  • To administer/enforce relevant provisions of the Immigration Ordinance (Chapter 115); Immigration Service Ordinance (Chapter 331) and to assist in the enforcement of any other Ordinances and Regulations by other government bureaux and departments through carrying out immigration control duties;
  • To process other person’s application for immigration facilities in which the applicant is named as a sponsor or referee;
  • For statistical and research purposes on the condition that the resulting statistics or results of the research will not be made available in a form which will identify the data subject or any of them; and
  • Any other legitimate purposes as may be required, authorised or permitted by law.

The provision of personal data in the application process is voluntary. However, if the applicant does not provide sufficient information, the Immigration Department may not be able to process his/her application.

The personal data provided by the applicant may be disclosed to government bureaux, departments and other organisations for the purposes mentioned above.

The applicant has the right to request access to and correction of his/her personal data as provided for in sections 18 and 22 and Principle 6 of Schedule 1 of the Personal Data (Privacy) Ordinance. The applicant’s right of access includes the right to obtain a copy of his/her personal data provided in the application form subject to the payment of a fee.

If the applicant has any questions about the personal data collected, including access and corrections to it, he/she should contact:

Chief Immigration Officer
Travel Documents and Nationality (Application) Section
Immigration Department
4/F, Immigration Tower
7 Gloucester Road
Wan Chai, Hong Kong
Telephone: (852) 2829 3093

Completing the Application Form

Applicants should complete all parts of the application form that are applicable to them. Items that are not applicable should be crossed out and signed. Applicants should also sign and date the declaration of their applications. Applications will be invalid if the declaration part is not completed. If the applicant is unable to sign, he/she should impress his/her left thumbprint on the form. If the applicant is aged under 18 on the date of application, a parent or legal guardian must sign the declaration.

Supporting Documents

The applicant should submit his/her application together with the following documents and photocopies:

  • proof of his/her identity and Chinese nationality including:
    • Hong Kong identity card
    • all passports and travel documents
    • birth or naturalisation certificate
  • proof of a foreign nationality he/she is about to acquire, such as a letter from the competent authorities of the country concerned confirming that nationality of the country will be granted to him/her after he/she has renounced his/her Chinese nationality
  • proof to support that he/she has other legitimate reasons to renounce his/her Chinese nationality
  • proof of relationship with his/her parent or legal guardian who submits the application if he/she is under the age of 18, such as:
    • his/her birth certificate
    • his/her parents’ marriage certificate
    • a court order granting guardianship (if the application is made by a legal guardian)

(a)

For applications submitted directly to the HKSAR Immigration Department

If the applicant submits the application in person, original documents with photocopies are required. If the applicant submits the application by post to the HKSAR Immigration Department, only photocopies of the supporting documents should be sent with the application. Original documents should not be sent by post. The applicant will be required to produce the original documents for verification at subsequent interview(s). If the applicant is outside Hong Kong, he/she will have to provide the name and address of a local referee who will be contacted by the Immigration Department to produce the originals of the documents for verification.

(b)

For applications submitted through Chinese Diplomatic and Consular Missions

If the applicant submits the application in person to a Chinese Diplomatic and Consular Mission, he/she will have to produce the original supporting documents for verification upon application.

Fee

(a)

For applications submitted directly to the HKSAR Immigration Department

A fee of HK$575 is payable on submission of application. However, the collection of fee does not constitute any guarantee or assurance that the application for renunciation of nationality will be approved. If the applicant pays by cheque or bank draft, it should be crossed and made payable to The Government of Hong Kong Special Administrative Region. No cash should be sent along with the application.

For applications submitted by post from overseas, the bank draft should be drawn on a bank in the HKSAR in HK or US Dollars (HK$575 or US$74). If the cheque or bank draft is not drawn on a bank in the HKSAR or not in HKSAR currency, the applicant should also include a bank handling charge of HK$100 (or US$13) in the same cheque or bank draft.

Alternatively, the applicant may provide the name and address of a local referee who will pay the fee on his/her behalf after receiving notification from the Immigration Department.

The fee paid is non-refundable in all circumstances.

(b)

For applications submitted through ChineseDiplomatic and Consular Missions

If the applicant submits the application through a Chinese Diplomatic and Consular Mission, he/she will be required to pay a handling charge and the expenses of forwarding his/her application to the HKSAR Immigration Department in addition to the application fee mentioned in paragraph (a) above.

The fee paid is non-refundable in any circumstances.

After Applying

Application for Renunciation of Chinese Nationality

Expand All
After Submission of Application

An acknowledgement will be given or posted to the applicant to acknowledge receipt of his/her application which was submitted in person or by post. Arrangement will be made to interview the applicant at a later date. If the applicant needs to contact the Immigration Department about his/her application, he/she should write to the Nationality Sub-section and provide the application number, with his/her full name and date and place of birth.

The declaration in Part 5 of the application form includes an undertaking to inform the Director of Immigration in writing of any changes that may affect the accuracy of any information the applicant provided in the application. It is important for the applicant to do this while the application is being considered.

If the application is successful, the applicant will be issued with a certificate of renunciation of Chinese nationality. After renunciation of Chinese nationality, the applicant is no longer a Chinese national and he/she will have to surrender his/her Chinese passport or HKSAR passport or certificate of naturalisation as a Chinese national (if any) for cancellation.

The Director of Immigration may cancel a certificate of renunciation if he is satisfied on reasonable grounds that the certificate was obtained by fraud, false representation or the concealment of any material fact.  Action may be taken against that person in accordance with law.

If the applicant renounces his/her Chinese nationality and later wishes to resume it, he/she will need to apply for restoration of Chinese nationality. More information is available through the following link.

Application for Restoration of Chinese Nationality

If the application for renunciation of Chinese nationality is not approved, the applicant will remain a Chinese national.

Consequence of Renunciation of Chinese Nationality in relation to the Right of Abode in the HKSAR