LCQ8: Applications for Certificate of Entitlements by Mainland residents


Hong Kong (HKSAR) -      Following is a question by the Hon Alvin Yeung and a written reply by the Secretary for Security, Mr John Lee, in the Legislative Council today (December 6):
 
Question:
 
     According to section 2AB(1)(c) of the Immigration Ordinance (Cap. 115), any person who claims to be a permanent resident of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region under paragraph 2(c) of Schedule 1 (i.e. a person of Chinese nationality born outside Hong Kong to a parent who, at the time of birth of that person, was (a) a Chinese citizen born in Hong Kong or (b) a Chinese citizen who had ordinarily resided in Hong Kong for a continuous period of not less than seven years) may apply to the Director of Immigration for a certificate of entitlement (CoE).  Regarding applications for CoE under the aforesaid provision, will the Government inform this Council:
 
(1) of the respective numbers of CoE applications made by persons residing in Mainland China which were (i) approved and (ii) rejected by the Director each year since July 1, 1997; and
 
(2) in respect of the rejected applications mentioned in (1), of (i) the five most common reasons for refusal and the number of applications involved for each reason, and (ii) the number of applications rejected because the applicants had made false claims?
 
Reply:
 
President,
 
     According to Article 24(2)(3) of the Basic Law and paragraph 2(c) of Schedule 1 to the Immigration Ordinance (Cap.

115) (the Ordinance), a person of Chinese nationality born outside Hong Kong before or after the establishment of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) of Hong Kong permanent resident(s) of Chinese nationality shall be a Hong Kong permanent resident with the right of abode in Hong Kong if at the time of his birth, his parent has the right of abode in Hong Kong.  Under section 2AB(1) of the Ordinance, any person who: (a) immediately before July 1, 1997 did not enjoy the right of abode in Hong Kong under the Ordinance as then in force; (b) is not the holder of a valid HKSAR passport or valid permanent identity card; and (c) claims to be a Hong Kong permanent resident under paragraph 2(c) of Schedule 1 to the Ordinance, may apply to the Director of Immigration for a certificate of entitlement (CoE).  The CoE Scheme requires that successful applicants, on their entry into Hong Kong, must affix valid CoEs to valid travel documents, including One-way Permits (i.e. Permits for Proceeding to Hong Kong and Macao), in order to be admitted into Hong Kong and establish their status as Hong Kong permanent residents under Article 24(2)(3) of the Basic Law.  The reply to the question is as follows:
 
(1) The number of CoEs issued to Mainland residents by the Immigration Department (ImmD) and the number of refusals of CoE applications submitted by Mainland residents from July 1997 to June 2017 are as follows:
 
  Number of CoEs issued to Mainland residents (Note 1) Number of refusals of CoE applications submitted by Mainland residents
1997 (from the implementation of the CoE Scheme onwards) to 2002 (Note 2) 136 628 1 599
2003 12 379 580
2004 8 735 588
2005 6 553 334
2006 4 956 251
2007 4 623 231
2008 4 550 160
2009 5 232 121
2010 3 987 100
2011 3 765 91
2012 3 900 158
2013 4 811 181
2014 4 777 207
2015 3 446 131
2016 3 207 125
2017 (up to end-June) 1 525 69
 
Note 1: The vast majority of the Mainland residents to whom CoEs were issued have already come to Hong Kong on strength of One-way Permits.
Note 2: The ImmD does not maintain annual statistics in or before 2002.
 
(2) If an applicant does not satisfy the requirement in paragraph 2(c) of Schedule 1 to the Ordinance, his CoE application will be refused.  The reasons for refusal include the applicant not being a person of Chinese nationality; the applicant born to a parent who, at the time of the birth of the applicant, was not a Chinese citizen according to Schedule 1 to the Ordinance; the parent-and-child relationship between the applicant and the applicant's parent not being established; etc.  The ImmD does not maintain the breakdown statistics of the reasons for refusal of CoE applications.



Published on: 2017-12-06

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