What is the change? China will welcome the Year of the Monkey and observe a seven-day national holiday Feb. 7-13.

What does the change mean? Government and private offices in China and other countries will be closed during the lunar new year celebration known as the Spring Festival. Applicants with time-sensitive fillings should plan ahead.

  • Implementation time frame: Feb. 7-13.
  • Visas/permits affected: All immigration-related services.
  • Who is affected: Foreign nationals seeking immigration-related services in China, Taiwan, Singapore and other Asian countries.
  • Impact on processing times: The one-week holiday may cause a backlog when services resume.
  • Next steps: To avoid delays, employers and foreign employees should submit applications ahead of the break where possible.

Background: The first day of the Chinese lunar new year is Feb. 8. China begins a full week of festivities beginning New Year’s Eve, Feb. 7. Offices will be open the two Saturdays before and after the break, Feb. 6 and Feb. 14.

Other Asian countries will observe varying holiday periods. Offices in Taiwan will close Feb. 6 -14, and reopen Feb. 15. Singapore will observe a shorter public holiday, Feb. 8-9.

BAL Analysis: Companies are encouraged to file work permit and other applications as early as possible before the holiday period.

This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group in China. For additional information, please contact

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