Sun, May 05, 2019 - Page 1 News List

Amended rules allow 635 naturalizations in two years

By Huang Hsin-po  /  Staff reporter

Since the Nationality Act (國籍法) was modified on Dec. 21, 2016, 502 residents, as well as 133 senior professionals and people who have made special contributions to Taiwan, have obtained Republic of China citizenship, the Ministry of the Interior said yesterday.

The amendments saw the passage of eight clauses to relax the regulations that govern permanent residency and citizenship.

Under the amended act, foreign spouses no longer need to provide statements of financial independence, residence and language ability.

So far, 502 residents have obtained citizenship through the loosened standards, including 137 people who have been divorced due to domestic violence or whose Taiwanese spouse has died, and 365 people who are raising children with citizenship, the ministry said.

To attract more foreign professionals, the amendment also relaxed naturalization standards for senior professionals and people who have made special contributions to the nation, allowing them to become naturalized without giving up their original citizenship, it said.

So far, 57 people who have made special contributions and 76 professionals have obtained citizenship under the amended act, it added.

The Department of Household Registration and the National Immigration Agency in October last year began offering a one-stop service for foreigners applying for naturalization, residency, household registration and other documentation to file their applications at local household registration offices.

The service has been used by 630 people in the past six months, it said.

The ministry also shortened the waiting period for obtaining citizenship for senior professionals and investing immigrants who hold a “Plum Blossom” Alien Permanent Resident Certificate.

It also requires relevant authorities to recommend eligible cardholders, rather than waiting for a review committee to review naturalization applications.

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