Guangdong loosens hiring restrictions to attract HK and Macau talent


The Guangdong Province government, on 15 February 2019, issued the Circular on Implementing Several Measures to Support the Deepening of Reform and Innovation in Pilot Free Trade Zones (PFTZ). The circular directs the provincial human resources and social security bureau to issue several pilot measures to implement key reforms.

Among these reforms, the circular will allow more Hong Kong and Macau professionals, such as certified accountants, architects, planning and patent agents, to practice in the PFTZ, upon registering with the relevant authorities. This is another local government measure to promote the Greater Bay Area Initiative and to help integrate the economies of Hong Kong and Macau with Guangdong Province.

Other key reforms that will be implemented include: (1) allowing dispatch employees to engage in temporary work in R&D positions; (2) decentralizing the approval authority from the provincial level to the PFTZ level for establishing sino-foreign joint ventures and wholly foreign-owned employment placement agencies in the PFTZ; (3) formulating a management system and implementing rules to better manage the work-study program for foreign students in the PFTZ; (4) allowing uncertified medical personnel in medical institutions to provide disease prevention services using traditional Chinese medicine.

Finally, the circular directs PFTZ authorities to understand and support the policy role played by project-based employment contracts that end upon the completion of a certain job and fixed short-term employment contracts used during peak production seasons. These flexible contracts are important to PFTZ manufacturing enterprises being able to attract the talent needed to complete these project-based and short-term operations.

Business Law Digest is compiled with the assistance of Baker McKenzie. Readers should not act on this information without seeking professional legal advice. You can contact Baker McKenzie by e-mailing Danian Zhang (Shanghai) at