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Shenyang to relax household registration

By Wu Yong in Shenyang and Zhou Huiying | China Daily | Updated: 2024-05-16 09:08


Shi Jianquan was excited to learn she will be able to apply for hukou — household registration — in Shenyang, the capital of Northeast China's Liaoning province, following a recent announcement by the city government that it will remove a number of requirements, making the process easier.

"My daughter will attend primary school in 2025," Shi said. "If I can get Shenyang hukou, she can come to Shenyang instead of staying with my parents in Jinzhou."

The 30-year-old insurance saleswoman and her husband arrived in Shenyang in June to seek a better life.

"There are more job opportunities and better pay in Shenyang, but I have to leave my daughter in Jinzhou to receive education," she said. "Now the new policy gives me the chance to live with my daughter, who can enjoy better educational resources."

To promote the development of Shenyang's population, the city government announced 10 measures on Friday that will come into effect in mid-June.

Shenyang will cancel the quota limit for the points-based household registration system, providing an open channel for those from regions outside the city to settle in Shenyang, the announcement said.

Those who rent properties or who obtain a Liaoning province residence permit in Shenyang can apply for household registration.

Individuals working in Shenyang with employment agreements or related documents, as well as college students studying in Shenyang can also apply for household registration.

The policy also expands the scope of educational qualifications and family members eligible for household registration.

On the Chinese mainland, the hukou system identifies an individual as a permanent resident of a particular area and grants them related social benefits, such as access to education, healthcare and the purchase of property.

Shenyang's statistics bureau said the total permanent population of Shenyang at the end of last year was 9.204 million, an increase of 57,000 compared to the end of 2022.

In 2023, Liaoning saw a net population inflow of 86,000, reversing 11 consecutive years of net population outflow, according to a report by Xinhua News Agency.

"Population has increasingly become an important indicator affecting urban competitiveness, and population size has become the engine of urban development," said Wang Yan, a professor of economics at the Shenyang Academy of Governance. "The new policy can help attract the population to flow into Shenyang, which can give full play to the driving force of urban development.

"The expansion of the population can promote the continuous enhancement of urban consumption, revitalize the local consumer market, such as the housing market, and thus stimulate economic development.

"Furthermore, it can increase the policy support for the revitalization of talent, which can better attract and retain talent in Shenyang, as well as enhance the competitiveness of urban talent and promote Shenyang's high-quality development."

Some provincial capitals and large cities in China have begun to relax their hukou policies this year.

On Saturday, the Nanjing public security bureau in Jiangsu province said non-local residents who have obtained legal property rights to housing in the city will be allowed to apply for household registration.

In Hangzhou, Zhejiang province, all limits on home purchases were canceled on May 9 and nonlocals who own residential properties in the city became eligible to apply for permanent resident status.

In April, the city government in Dongguan, Guangdong province, relaxed household registration restrictions. Non-local residents employed in Dongguan who have been continuously participating in Dongguan social insurance through their employers and have held a Dongguan residence permit for at least a year can now apply for household registration.

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