Akram runs a trading company in Yiwu, Zhejiang, which is mainly engaged in the hardware business. However, since he arrived in 2009, he had to return every three months after his visa expired. Now, he doesn't have to run back and forth thanks to the new local policy that gives work permit extension to foreigners with good credit.
It is reported that in September last year, Yiwu promulgated the Rules for the Implementation of Pilot Work Permits for Foreigners from Small and Micro Business Enterprises, and also regulated the extension of work permits based on a credit system.
Yiwu created a foreigners' credit database and included the credit scores in the management points system, as an important assessment when considering the extension of work permits. In the system, 11 categories including honesty, trustworthiness, and personal tax payment and 19 sub-items were also set up.
It was stipulated that people with over points 60 shall be granted an extension of not more than one year, and those with over points 100 shall be granted an extension of not more than two years.
In addition, a special credit information verification platform has been set up to inquire about the credit status and credit scores of foreign investors and foreign-funded enterprises, and to calculate the total score of work permit extension points accordingly.
It is reported that since the formal operation of the platform in August this year, Yiwu has examined the personal credit of more than 200 foreigners and the credit information of their enterprises, and more than 40 foreigners have obtained two-year extension for their good credit scores.
Akram said that this policy has created more favorable conditions for him to do invest and business, as well as helps him to invite more people to start businesses in Yiwu.
Yiwu is an area that is crowded with foreign businessmen. There are 550,000 overseas businessmen purchasing products from there every year, and 15,000 overseas businessmen who are residents in Yiwu.
"The Credit situation directly affects the extension of work permits for foreigners, and the intangible credit brings tangible convenience. The implementation of the new policy will greatly enhance the foreign-related business environment in Yiwu, to promote social and economic development, as well as market prosperity. " said the spokesman of the authority.