Shanghai Expats Now Eligible for Social Security and Pensions

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SHANGHAI, Nov. 25 – Shanghai’s Human Resources and Social Security Bureau has announced rules to extend the city’s social security program to expatriate employees.

The moves mean that expats will be able to claim for coverage for sick pay and work place injuries provided they pay into the system. Previously expatriate staff had to contribute to commercial insurance funds for such coverage. Overseas Chinese, Taiwanese, Hong Kong and Macau residents will also be able to take advantage of the new rules.

Expatriates will also qualify for the city pension scheme when they reach retirement age – 55 for women, 60 for men – provided they have been making payments for a “specified period.” The scheme is voluntary and has just been announced on the bureau’s web site.

Employers will pay an additional 37 percent of wages in social security charges for expatriate staff wishing to obtain such benefits, while the employee contributions will rise to 11 percent of salary, capped at RMB9,876 per year. Expatriates leaving Shanghai prior to retirement will be able to withdraw their contributions.

Shanghai is the first Chinese city to offer a social security service to expatriate residents.

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