What is the change? Shanghai authorities have announced that foreign nationals obtaining new passports at a foreign embassy or consulate must obtain a confirmation letter to submit as part of residence permit amendment applications.

What does the change mean? Effective immediately, foreign nationals obtaining new passports must obtain confirmation letters stating the applicant’s name, old passport number, new passport number,  the date on which the passport was issued and the date on which it was collected by the applicant. The confirmation letters must then be provided when foreign nationals file a residence permit amendment, which is required when a new passport is collected.

  • Implementation time frame: Immediate and ongoing.
  • Visas/permits affected: Passports issued by a foreign embassy or consulate.
  • Who is affected: Foreign nationals obtaining new passports at a foreign embassy or consulate.
  • Impact on processing times: The change will add an additional step for affected applicants to the process of obtaining a new passport. Residence permit amendment applications may be delayed if the confirmation letters are not provided.

Background: Immigration regulations in Shanghai require foreign nationals to file a residence permit amendment within 10 days of obtaining a new passport. Amendment applications in this circumstance now must also include confirmation letters as outlined above. Confirmation letters that are not in English or Chinese must be translated by a certified translator. Confirmation letters are only required when passports are obtained at foreign embassies or consulates and when a new passport is blank, i.e., when the passport has no stamp from entering China.

BAL Analysis: Foreign nationals in Shanghai should take note of the change and be sure to obtain confirmation letters when required, particularly because the failure to do so may unnecessarily delay residence permit amendment applications.  

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

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