A proposed legal amendment to close a three-month gap between Chinese citizens becoming naturalized Republic of China (ROC) citizens and renouncing their Chinese citizenship yesterday proceeded to committee review.
The proposal, sponsored by Democratic Progressive Party legislators Wu Ping-jui (吳秉叡) and Lin I-chin (林宜瑾), seeks to amend Article 17 of the Act Governing Relations Between the People of the Taiwan Area and the Mainland Area (台灣地區與大陸地區人民關係條例) by prohibiting Chinese citizens from obtaining ROC citizenship before they have provided documentation proving that they have renounced their Chinese citizenship.
Under existing rules, Chinese citizens can immediately proceed with household registration and apply for a National Identification Card once they have obtained a permanent resident certificate through marriage or special permits granted by the Ministry of the Interior.
Photo: Lin Liang-sheng, Taipei Times
The act’s accompanying guidelines on long-term and permanent residence stipulate that people who fail to provide documents proving that they have renounced their Chinese citizenship within three months of receiving a permanent resident permit would have their permit revoked.
The grace period creates a loophole in which some Chinese have dual nationality and dual household registration, resulting in a breach in the nation’s border controls, the lawmakers said.
The proposed amendment, if passed, would prohibit the National Immigration Agency from approving permanent residence certificates for Chinese citizens if they have not provided proof that they had renounced their original nationality.
A proposed amendment to the Nationality Act (國籍法), sponsored by DPP legislators Lai Pin-yu (賴品妤) and Ho Chih-wei (何志偉), that would ban Republic of China citizens with dual nationality from taking government positions also advanced to preliminary review.
Although rules are already in place to prevent people with dual nationality from serving as publicly elected delegates, the act remains at odds with the Civil Service Employment Act (公務人員任用法), resulting in Constitutional Interpretation No. 768, which states that people with dual nationality must not work as government-contracted physicians, Ho said.
As civil servants move up the ranks, their responsibilities could become more closely related to the nation’s interests, or make them privvy to sensitive intelligence, he said.
The proposal aims to safeguard national interests and secrets, he said.
Both proposals are to be reviewed by the Legislative Yuan’s Foreign Affairs and National Defense Committee and the Internal Administration Committee, Legislative Speaker You Si-kun (游錫堃) said.
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