Shanghai launches new online portal for expat services

Updated: Jan 1, 2024 By Lin Shujuan chinadaily.com.cn Print
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Shanghai Municipal People's Government launched the beta version of a new online portal (english.shanghai.gov.cn) for expat services on Jan 1.

Called International Services Shanghai, the new website will have its own Facebook, X (formerly known as Twitter), and WeChat accounts.

The portal, operated by China Daily, serves as a one-stop platform for foreigners, regardless of whether they are looking for information related to work, travel or study in Shanghai. 

It is answering the call to stress the need to effectively remove the obstacles for foreigners to come to China for business, study, and tourism made during the annual Central Economic Work Conference held in Beijing on December 11-12.

The portal has been integrated with the city's e-governance platform, Government Online-Offline Shanghai, to offer quick online access to foreigners.

Online and offline activities, such as policy introduction sessions, business consultations, themed salons, cultural experiences, and learning and training events, will be organized to better serve and engage with the expat community. 

Many expats who participated in the beta testing of the portal have lauded its launch.

Michael Wong, managing partner of Talent Service, Asia Pacific, EY, said the portal will allow people interested in coming to Shanghai to make better-informed decisions.

Montealegre Carvajal Edwin Roberto, who is currently an international student at the Shanghai Conservatory of Music, said the information provided on the website regarding the setting up of businesses has allowed him to thoroughly understand the nitty-gritty of the process. The Costa Rican is planning to open his own performance company after graduation.

Clarisse Le Guernic, who works in the tourism industry in Shanghai, said the new website would be beneficial as it would allow her to better answer queries from her customers about the city.

Shanghai-based marketing consultant Natacha Extier, said the website is useful even for long-term residents like her as it contains a wealth of useful content on doing business in the city.

The website will be made available in eight other languages - Japanese, Korean, German, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Russian, and Arabic at a later time.

"Shanghai is a charming city full of hope and unlimited opportunities, and it is a land for entrepreneurs to pursue their dreams and make a career. We will continue to create a first-class business environment that is market-oriented, law-based and internationalized, provide accurate, convenient and innovative high-quality services, and work hand in hand with everybody to create an open and prosperous future," Gong Zheng, the mayor of Shanghai, said during the "Invest in China Year" summit in November.

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