Attn: parents of mixed Chinese kids

From the Global Times:

The city’s Exit-Entry Administration Bureau on Monday strongly advised parents of biracial infants born in China with Chinese nationalities to make sure their paperwork is in order before arriving at local airports, after some 100 families have been prohibited from taking their infant children out of the country this year.

Mixed children with a Chinese nationality require a “pass certification” before they are permitted to go abroad, according to Chinese law.

“But the majority of parents are unaware of the policy, or cannot be bothered apply for the certificate, which mixed kids living in China need,” Li Feng, a press officer for the bureau, told the Global Times on Monday. “If their parents don’t get the certificate, then biracial kids are not legally allowed to leave the country.”

After completing a national validation for their biracial children, parents can apply for the certificate at the city’s Exit-Entry Administration Bureau, a process that takes at least seven working days and costs 100 yuan ($15).

Mixed children who hold a foreign nationality do not need the certificate, but are required to have the same travel documents as foreigners living in China. Dual citizenship is not recognized by China.

The tricky part is that last sentence, “Mixed children who hold a foreign nationality do not need the certificate.” This is complicated because AFAIK just having foreign nationality isn’t enough. Just as any child born in China to at least one Chinese parent is officially “Chinese” at birth, any child born of a Canadian parent is “Canadian” at birth, regardless of where they’re born. But as the above mentioned (and every bi-national set of parents knows), China doesn’t allow dual-citizenship. Thus, the way I understand it, until a child leaves the country and returns as a citizen of the non-China country (with a Chinese visa), they are viewed by China as Chinese.

So, as an example, despite my son Casey having Canadian citizenship by birth, as well as proof of that citizenship in the form of a Canadian Citizenship Card, China will continue to see him as “Chinese” until he leaves China and returns using Canadian documentation. Again, AFAIK, there is no way to change this (ie. renounce Casey’s Chinese citizenship) inside of China.

A pain in the ass, but about on par with every other bureaucratic thing in this country or elsewhere. I’ve still a helluva rant yet to be written down about the absolute absurdity of getting Casey’s Canadian citizenship card.

What’s with the “biracial infants” bit in the first sentence of the GT report? If a Chinese-Canadian has a baby with a Chinese national their child would not be biracial, just binational. It also speaks loads about the differences between China and Canada that the Chinese national could not possibly be any race other than “Chinese”.

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  1. Pingback: Getting Canadian Citizenship in China | Ryan McLaughlin

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