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December 21, 2011

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Foreigners caught without work visa

SHANGHAI police are warning expats without work permits not to find jobs in the city, which will cause them to be fined or deported if they're caught.

The Exit-Entry Administration Bureau of Shanghai police said yesterday that they had found some foreigners with travel visas illegally working as English teachers in the city's language institutions.

"We'll crack down on the illegal working of foreigners in Shanghai, as always," an officer surnamed Li said yesterday.

The bureau did not say how widespread the problem of illegal employment of foreigners is, but it's known that the city's expat population is growing quickly.

In a recent case, a 19-year-old man from the United Kingdom visiting Shanghai on a travel visa was caught by the police while teaching English to Chinese children in a local foreign language institution, police said.

Officers said the Briton looked very young and attracted their attention, so they checked his passport. The man said he was traveling from Britain and had no qualifications to teach, according to the police. He did not even go to college, police added.

Through the investigation, the institution was also found unqualified. The names of the man and the institution were not disclosed.

The exit-entry bureau reminded that foreigners have to get a residence permit from it and a work permit from the city's labor authority before they are allowed to work here. For those who want to teach, they have to apply for a foreign expert certificate from the foreign experts bureau of the city and they must have at least a bachelor's degree, two years or more of teaching experience and the certificate of TESOL or TEFL, police said.

Shanghai has the largest population of foreign nationals among all mainland cities and provinces in China, with more than 143,000 expats living in the city, the Shanghai Statistics Bureau announced this week. Nearly one in every four foreign residents in the country lives in Shanghai.

The city is home to a total of 208,300 overseas residents, which adds people from Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan to the foreign nationals population.The overseas population constitutes nearly 1 percent of the city's 23 million residents.


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