China: Law of 1991, on the Protection of the Rights and Interests of Returned Overseas Chinese and the Family Members of Overseas Chinese

Article 1

This Law is enacted in accordance with the Constitution with a view to protecting the lawful rights and interests of returned overseas Chinese and the family members of overseas Chinese.

Article 2

Returned overseas Chinese denote overseas Chinese who have returned to the country and taken as their place of permanent residence. Overseas Chinese denote Chinese citizens who have settled down abroad.

Family members of overseas Chinese denote the family members, residing in the country, of overseas Chinese and returned overseas Chinese.

The family members of overseas Chinese referred to in this Law include overseas Chinese's and returned overseas Chinese's spouses, parents, children and their spouses, brothers and sisters, paternal grand-parents, maternal grand-parents, grand-children and other relations who have long supported or been supported by overseas Chinese or returned overseas Chinese.

Article 3

Returned overseas Chinese and the family members of overseas Chinese shall be entitled to the citizen's rights prescribed by tile Constitution and the law and at the same time shall perform the citizen's duties prescribed by the Constitution and the law. No organization or individual may discriminate against them.

The State shall, in accordance with the actual conditions and the characteristics of returned overseas Chinese and the family members of overseas Chinese, give them appropriate preferential treatment, and the specific measures thereof shall be formulated by the State Council or the relevant competent departments under the State Council.

Article 4

The State shall make arrangements for overseas Chinese who have returned to the country and taken it as their place of permanent residence.

Article 5

Returned overseas Chinese shall be entitled to appropriate representation on the National People's Congress and local people's congresses in places where there are relatively large numbers of returned Overseas Chinese.

Article 6

Returned overseas Chinese and the family members of overseas Chinese shall have the right to establish public organizations in conformity with the law, to safeguard the lawful rights and interests of returned overseas Chinese and the family members of overseas Chinese and to conduct legitimate social activities suitable to then needs.

The property of the public organizations established according to law by returned overseas Chinese and the family members of overseas Chinese shall be protected by law, and shall not be infringed upon by any organization or individual.

Article 7

The Stale shall give support to enterprises such as agricultural or forest farms which have provided placement for returned overseas Chinese. No organization or individual may appropriate the land lawfully used by such enterprises or upon their rights and interests.

Enterprises such as agricultural or forest farms which have provided placement for returned overseas Chinese may, in the light of their needs, set up schools and medical care and health institutions in a rational way, to which the State shall give support and aid with respect to personnel, facilities and funds.

Article 8

Local people's governments at various levels shall support returned overseas Chinese and the family members of overseas Chinese to invest in the establishment of industrial and commercial enterprises, in the development of barren hills, waste lands and beaches, or to engage in the agricultural, forestry, animal husbandry, sideline and fishery production. Their lawful rights and interests shall be protected by law.

Article 9

People's governments at various levels shall support returned overseas Chinese and the family members of overseas Chinese to set up public welfare establishments in the country. Their lawful rights and interests shall be protected by law.

Returned overseas Chinese and the family members of overseas Chinese who receive materials from donations voluntarily made by their relatives and friends outside the country and will use them in public welfare undertakings shall, in accordance with relevant regulations of the State, deal with the acceptance thereof and enjoy preferential treatment of duty reduction or exemption.

Article 10

The State shall, in accordance with the law, protect the ownership of private houses, in the country, of returned overseas Chinese and the family members of overseas Chinese.

Construction units shall, in accordance with relevant regulations of the State, make due compensation and appropriate arrangements for those returned overseas Chinese and the family members of overseas Chinese whose private houses are requisitioned, dismantled or removed according to law for State construction.

Article 11

Students who are returned overseas Chinese, children of returned overseas Chinese and children, residing in the country, of overseas Chinese, shall, in accordance with relevant regulations of the State, be given special considerations in respect of school admission and employment.

Article 12

The State shall protect the income of, returned overseas Chinese and the family members of overseas Chinese from remittance sent by overseas Chinese.

Article 13

Returned overseas Chinese and the family members of overseas Chinese shall have the right to inherit or accept the estate, legacy or donation from their relatives or friends outside the country.

Returned overseas Chinese and the family members of overseas Chinese shall have the right to dispose of their property outside the country.

Article 14

Contacts and communications between returned overseas Chinese and the family members of overseas Chinese and their relatives and friends outside the country shall be protected by law.

Article 15

Applications for exit from the country by returned overseas Chinese and the family members of overseas Chinese shall be examined for approval by the competent authorities concerned within the prescribed time limit.

For returned overseas Chinese and the family members of overseas

Chinese who desire to leave the country urgently because of special circumstances such as critical illness(es) or death(s) of their direct lineal relatives or the need for disposition of property outside the country within a prescribed time limit, the competent authorities concerned shall give examination for approval without delay on the basis of valid certificates provided by the applicants.

Article 16

The State shall safeguard the right of returned overseas Chinese and the family members of overseas Chinese to leave the country for the purpose of visiting their relatives.

Returned overseas Chinese and the family members of overseas Chinese who work in State organs or State-owned enterprises and institutions shall enjoy the treatment as provided in the relevant regulations of, the State in respect of leaving the country for the purpose of visiting their relatives.

Article 17

Returned Overseas Chinese and the family members of Returned overseas Chinese and the family members of overseas Chinese who retire as or not as veteran cadres or quit their posts for justified reasons shall continue to receive their pensions after leaving the country for settling down abroad.

Article 18

Returned overseas Chinese and the family members of overseas Chinese who apply to go abroad for the purpose of study at their own expense shall be given preferential treatment in accordance with the relevant regulations of the State.

Article 19

The State shall protect the legitimate rights and interests, outside the country, of returned overseas Chinese and the family members of overseas Chinese in accordance with the international treaties to which the People's Republic of China is a party or has acceded or with international practice.

Article 20

Returned overseas Chinese and the family members of overseas Chinese shall, where their lawful rights and interests are violated, have the right to request the relevant competent departments to handle the matter in accordance with the law, or, bring a suit in a people's court according to law.

Article 21

The State Council shall, on the basis of this Law, formulate measures for its implementation.

The standing committees of the people's congresses of the provinces, autonomous regions and municipalities directly under the Central Government may. pursuant to this Law and the State Council's measures; for implementation, formulate measures for implementation respectively.

Article 22

This Law shall enter into force as of January l, 1991.

Comments:
This is an unofficial translation. This Law was adopted at the 15th Meeting of the Standing Committee of the Seventh National People's Congress on September 7, 1990, promulgated by Order No.33 of the President of the People's Republic of China on September 7, 1990, and effective as of January 1, 1991.
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