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China Eases Restriction on Passport Issuing

Date: 2012-08-22

China will ease a restriction covering the household registration that people must hold when applying for passports and travel passes in six big cities, the Ministry of Public Security announced Wednesday.

Those who work or study at higher education institutions in Beijing, Tianjin, Shanghai, Chongqing, Guangzhou and Shenzhen will soon be allowed to apply for passports and travel passes there, even if they do not hold household registrations in these six cities, the ministry said in a statement.

The new policy will take effect on Sept. 1, the statement said.

Currently, every Chinese must apply for a passport or travel pass to police in the area where he or she is registered in a household. That has caused great trouble for people who leave their hometown but do not transfer their household registration locations.

The policy is being applied in the six cities because they see a large inflow of people, the ministry's statement said.

Apart from the household registration certificate, identification card and temporary residence permit, an employed person will need a statement from the city's social security department confirming at least one year of payment to social security programs. A college student will need a statement from his college on the enrollment.

If the pass is granted, police will issue it within 30 days of an application being made. If the application is turned down, the applicant will need to apply for reconsideration in his household registration location, the statement said.

The policy is among a number of efforts to facilitate people's travel abroad and to provide equal public service to both the registered and migrant population.

In the first half of this year, about 38 million Chinese traveled abroad, an year-on-year increase of 18 percent, according to the National Tourism Administration.(Xinhua)