The crackdown on illegal foreigners in China has begun – at least for those illegally living and working in Sichuan.
Employers in that province who are caught hiring illegal foreigners will be fined from 5,000 to 100,000 yuan during a four-month campaign this summer, ECNS reports.
This comes after policymakers proposed strict punishments back in March against illegal foreigners living in China.
Chinese lawmakers have earlier reiterated the urgent need to tackle the problem of an increasing number of foreigners who are illegally living and working in China.
According to the Global Times, National People’s Congress deputy Zhu Lieyu has called for stricter punishment on foreigners committing the “three illegals” of illegally entering, staying or working in China.
Speaking to journalists, Zhu said “The ‘three illegals’ should be listed as a crime and should attract stricter punishment. Some of these foreigners have occasionally caused trouble in civil society.”
Zhu is reported to have introduced a bill containing measures to better manage the problem, with one of the non-Communist political parties supporting moves towards enhanced supervision over visa agents and a speedier mechanism for repatriating illegal foreigners. Apparently, this “summer of terror” crackdown has been ongoing since May 20th and will run to September 20th. So, those anyone teaching English on a L visa in Sichuan might want to take an extended summer break, a report advised.
At the moment the maximum penalty faced by those who illegally enter or stay in China is a fine of up to 10,000 yuan or 15 days detention. Those found illegally working can be fined up to 20,000 yuan. If they are deported, they will not be allowed to reenter China for one to five years.
Data from the last Chinese census, carried out in 2010, revealed that there were just shy of 600,000 foreign nationals living in China. A drop in the ocean when compared to the 1.3 billion strong Chinese population.
In order to find these needles in the haystack, police are urging residents to report illegal foreigners to police.