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Performance Pledges

It has always been the goal of the Immigration Department to render efficient and courteous services to members of the public while maintaining effective immigration control.

With this in mind, the Department launched its performance pledges in December 1992. Since then, performance pledges have been published annually. Through these pledges, members of the public are informed of the standards of service which they can expect from the Department in its immigration clearance work, registration of births, deaths and marriages, and issuing of identity cards, travel documents and visas. They are also advised what they can do when the standards are not met.

Our Department publishes performance pledges annually.

Immigration Department Users’ Committee

Meetings are held regularly for members of the Immigration Department Users' Committee.

For the purpose of effectively monitoring the performance of the Department on the pledges made, a Users’ Committee has been established since September 1993. It is chaired by the Director of Immigration. Members include representatives from various trades and industries concerned. The Committee meets half-yearly to monitor and review the fulfillment of performance pledges, advises the Director of Immigration on areas of service that may require improvements, and helps determine the level of resources required to achieve the standards set.


Visas and Permits

The Department provides efficient and convenient visa processing services to the public and visitors.

Pledges for different types of entry visa applications were generally achieved. In 2016, 97.2 per cent of employment visa applications were finalised within four weeks, exceeding the pledge of 90 per cent within four weeks. For other visa applications, 98.9 per cent were finalised within six weeks, exceeding the pledge of 90 per cent within six weeks. As regards visit visa applications, 100 per cent were finalised within the pledged four weeks.

In the same period, all applications for HKSAR Travel Passes, working holiday visas, entry permits for Mainland fisherman deckhands, entry permits under the Admission Scheme for Mainland Talents and Professionals, and multiple entry permits for Chinese residents of Taiwan working, studying or residing in Hong Kong met the pledged standards. As regards Pre-arrival Registration for Taiwan residents, all applications were finalised with results made known to the applicants on the day of application, whereas 94.9 per cent of multiple visit permits for Taiwan residents for a stay of 30 days were finalised within the pledged two working days. For applications for Certificate of Entitlement to the Right of Abode in the HKSAR, 100 per cent of the applications were finalised within three months, exceeding the pledge of 95 per cent within three months.

Immigration Control Points

The Department is committed to providing efficient and courteous immigration clearance service at control points.

In 2016, all the control points were able to clear Hong Kong residents within 15-minute waiting time. As regards visitors, the Airport Control Point cleared 99.9 per cent of visitors within 15-minute waiting time, which was better than the pledged standard. For other control points at the China Ferry Terminal, the Macau Ferry Terminal, the Kai Tak Cruise Terminal, the Tuen Mun Ferry Terminal, Lo Wu, Hung Hom, Lok Ma Chau Spur Line, Lok Ma Chau, Man Kam To, Sha Tau Kok and Shenzhen Bay, they were able to clear on average over 99.9 per cent of the visitors within 30 minutes.

Registration for Identity Cards

It was pledged that registration for identity card could be completed at counter within 60 minutes and identity card would be issued on the 10th working day.

Starting from 2 January 2014, the standard processing time at counter for the registration for Hong Kong identity card has been shortened from 75 minutes to 60 minutes (applicable to 95 per cent of the applications). This performance pledge was generally achieved in 2016, while all identity cards were issued on the 10th working day. Moreover, all the applicants could be provided with service on the day of attendance.

Registration of Births, Deaths and Marriages

The pledged processing time of 30 minutes at the counter for registration of births and deaths, and for giving notice of intended marriage was generally met in 2016. Moreover, the pledge of issuing certified copy of birth, death or marriage certificate within nine working days (issuing within 10 minutes if the birth or death records concerned have been converted as computer records) was also achieved.

Travel Documents

In 2016, the pledges of issuing HKSAR passport and Document of Identity for Visa Purposes within 10 working days and issuing HKSAR passport to a child applicant not holding a Hong Kong permanent identity card in 14 working days were met. Moreover, the pledge of issuing Seaman’s Identity Book and Re-entry Permit on the same day of application was also achieved.

Chinese Nationality Matters

In 2016, the pledge that 100 per cent of applicants would be issued with confirmation letters on declaration of change of nationality on the same day of application was achieved. The pledge that 80 per cent of applications for renunciation of Chinese nationality would be finalised within two months was also met. As regards applications for naturalisation as a Chinese national and restoration of Chinese nationality, the pledge of finalising 80 per cent of the applications within three months was achieved.

Quality Service

Immigration Department Homepage

The Departmental homepage provides an easy gateway for users to access the Department’s electronic services and the essential information about all aspects of our services.

The Department’s homepage ( is available in traditional Chinese, simplified Chinese and English versions. It contains up-to-date information on immigration services and gives Internet users the convenience of downloading commonly used application forms. The homepage was revamped on 10 March 2015. Its customer-oriented design provides an easy gateway for users to access electronic services and the essential information about all aspects of our services. It continues to adopt the Web Accessibility Design, ensuring the content is available for all, including not only persons with disabilities, but also persons with specific difficulties such as the elderly and persons beset with colour-blindness, cognitive and physical issues such as dyslexia, etc.

Immigration Mobile Application

Since the launch of the Hong Kong Immigration Mobile Application on 5 December 2013, around 136,000 downloads have been recorded. The Mobile Application not only provides Hong Kong residents and visitors with the latest information on the estimated passenger waiting time at major land boundary control points, but also posts the latest and frequently used information of our services.

‘Hong Kong Immigration Department’ YouTube Channel

The official YouTube Channel ‘Hong Kong Immigration Department’ was launched on 1 February 2016.

The official YouTube Channel ‘Hong Kong Immigration Department’ was launched on 1 February 2016, to give the public access to information on the services and activities of the Department anytime and anywhere. Video clips uploaded to the Channel are grouped under three categories, namely ‘Easy Access’, ‘About Us’ and ‘Departmental Activities’. Under the ‘Easy Access’ category, the Department has produced over 40 videos which feature services most commonly used by the public and their respective application requirements and procedures. For the other two categories, short videos introducing our work and activities have been uploaded, offering another avenue for the public to get to know about the Department. The total number of views of the Channel is over 120,000 since launch. The Department will continue to produce more videos to provide greater convenience to the public.

Courtesy Campaign

To foster a customer-focused service culture and to enhance staff commitment, the Most Courteous Immigration Control Officers election campaign was held in November 2016 for the 21st consecutive year. The winners were elected through voting by travellers at immigration control points. The officer with the highest number of votes was also appointed by the Hong Kong Tourism Board as the ‘Hong Kong Courtesy Ambassador’. This activity helps promote tourism.

Skytrax Award for Best Airport Immigration Service

The Department was awarded the Skytrax Award for Best Airport Immigration Service for the second consecutive year.

The Airport Division was voted the winner of the Skytrax Award for Best Airport Immigration Service for the second consecutive year in the World Airport Survey commissioned by Skytrax, a United Kingdom-based specialist research agent of the air transport industry. The award showed that the effort of airport staff in enhancing the immigration service was recognised by passengers from around the world.

2016 Hong Kong International Airport Customer Service Excellence Programme

The Department was awarded the Best Customer Service Enhancement Award in the 2016 Hong Kong International Airport Customer Service Excellence Programme.

In the 2016 Hong Kong International Airport Customer Service Excellence Programme organised by the Airport Authority Hong Kong, the Airport Division was awarded the Best Customer Service Enhancement Award and 29 frontline staff of the Airport Control Point were also awarded Certificate of Appreciation in the Corporate Excellence Award.

The Ombudsman’s Awards 2016

Members of the Department received The Ombudsman’s Awards for Officers of Public Organisations.

In 2016, two members of the Department received The Ombudsman’s Awards for Officers of Public Organisations, making it the 18th consecutive year that our officers were awarded. The awards were given in recognition of the Department’s professional and proactive attitude towards complaint handling as well as our concerted efforts in providing quality services to the public.

The Secretary for the Civil Service (SCS)’s Commendation Award Scheme 2016

Administered by the Civil Service Bureau, the SCS’s Commendation Award Scheme aims at commending civil servants in recognition of their consistently meritorious performance. In 2016, six members of the Department were commended under the Scheme. Since the introduction of the Scheme in 2004, it has been the 13th consecutive year that our staff members were commended.

Caring Organisation

The Department has been awarded the 10 Years Plus Caring Organisation Logo since 2015-16.

In recognition of our contributions in caring for the community, employees and environment, the Department has been awarded the Caring Organisation Logo by the Hong Kong Council of Social Service since 2006 and further awarded the 10 Years Plus Caring Organisation Logo since 2015-16. In addition, three of our staff were awarded as Caring Ambassadors in 2016-17 for their active participation in and support to society.

Customer Feedback

The Department treasures all customer feedback, be it praises or complaints. Positive feedback from the public not only recognises our efforts in providing quality services, but also provides the foundation for maintaining the Department’s service standards. On the other hand, the Customer Services Unit of the Department receives complaints and monitors the respective replies. Complaints received are treated positively and constructively as a source of inspiration for further improvement. In the course of processing complaints, the Department has the opportunity to examine the quality of services from different perspectives so as to better ourselves in meeting the expectations of our community.

Assistance to Persons with Disabilities

It is the government’s established policy objective to provide a barrier-free environment for persons with disabilities with a view to enabling them to access to premises and make use of the facilities and services therein on an equal basis with others, thereby enabling them to live independently and fully integrate into the community. In this regard, the Department has equipped its premises with ancillary facilities and services for persons with disabilities, such as induction loop systems for persons with hearing impairment, tactile guide paths, special help-through channels at control points, etc. The Department also reviews existing facilities regularly and makes improvements as far as feasible in order to provide quality services to them. Training is provided to staff, especially frontline staff members who have frequent and direct contact with members of the public, to enable them to serve the public in a fair and just manner, as well as to identify those who show signs of disability and are in need. Designated officers have been appointed in offices of the Department to serve as the first points of contact on accessibility issues at the offices.

Wide e-Channel and e-Channel with voice navigation function facilitate persons with disabilities to enjoy convenient immigration clearance service.

To further facilitate the use of self-service immigration clearance by visually impaired persons, the Department launched the first e-Channel with voice navigation function in the world at the Lok Ma Chau Spur Line Control Point in 2013. The service was also extended to the Macau Ferry Terminal and Shenzhen Bay Control Points in 2014 and 2015 respectively. To use the service, the visually impaired persons should first press the activation button at the entrance of the e-Channel to initiate the voice navigation function. Voice instructions will then guide them through all the steps, including when the gates open or close, to complete the clearance process.

Sustainable Development

In the face of ever changing conditions, the Department attaches great importance to staff’s sustainable development. With the creation of a life-long learning culture within the Department, staff members are encouraged to keep pace with society and strive for excellence. The Immigration Service Institute of Training and Development regularly reviews the departmental training strategy and provides staff with updated job knowledge and management skills through a variety of training programmes. This not only enhances the overall work efficiency, but also contributes to the sustainable development of both the Department and staff.