TAIPEI (Taiwan News) -- Taiwan's Act for the Recruitment and Employment of Foreign Professional Talent officially went into effect yesterday (Feb. 8), according to the National Development Council (NDC).
On Oct. 31, Taiwan’s Legislature passed the Act for the Recruitment and Employment of Foreign Professional Talent (外國專業人才延攬及僱用法) in an bid to attract and retain more international professionals in the country, and it officially went into effect on Thursday of this week. Among the 10 new incentives included with the law, qualified foreign professionals now have the option of applying for a four-in-one "Employment Gold Card" (就業金卡), which includes a work permit, residence visa, alien residency permit and re-entry permit.
The new law defines three new categories of foreign professionals, including "foreign professionals," "foreign special professionals," and "foreign senior professionals," according to Lin Chih-mei (林至美), head of the NDC's department of human resource development, reported CNA.
Lin explained that "foreign professionals" refers to professionals who meet requirements defined by government agencies and examples include: technical workers, business executives, sports coaches or athletes, independent artists, and specialty or technology teachers at short-term cram schools.
In order to speed up the transformation and upgrading of domestic industries, "foreign special professionals" are those who are skilled in eight major areas, including: science and technology, economics, education, culture and arts, sports, finance, law and architectural design. Targeted areas include non technology, artificial intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IoT), virtual reality (VR), semiconductors, biotech, green energy, FinTech, digital economy, and more.
Lin said that "foreign senior professionals" are senior professional talents and specialists in areas that Taiwan is lacking in, such as science, research, business management, and winners of international competitions.
The act has eased regulations on visitor, work and residence visas for foreign professionals, including those for their spouses and children. It also makes provisions for retirement benefits, expanded health insurance coverage and tax concessions.
The introduction of a special employment visa for professionals will still be limited to individuals who during the most recent six months of work earned at least NT$47,971 (US$1,648) per month, while those without working experience should at least have graduated from one of the world’s 500 top universities. The maximum number of such foreign professionals for this year was set at 2,000. but that could change in the future, the United Daily News reported.
The newly relaxed rules also now allow teachers of animation, gaming and other forms of digital content to teach in cram schools, as long as they have over four years of related work experience and over two years of teaching experience. In addition to the benefit for gamers, foreign independent artists will also be allowed to apply for a work permit in Taiwan without an employer.