Bill relaxing conditions for foreign professionals in Taiwan passes third reading

Accredited foreigners in certain industries soon may not need to take proficiency exams

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(Image from Pixabay)

(Image from Pixabay)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — A bill allowing accredited foreign professionals extra points or exemption from proficiency exams has passed its third reading in the Legislative Yuan today.

Foreigners accredited in particular industries, and holding qualifications certified by their country of origin, will now be able to take individual examinations based on their skill set and professional experience.

Currently, many professionals within a given field are required to sit the same examination, regardless of experience. The new law will reduce the number of hoops well-established industry experts have to jump through in order to begin working in Taiwan.

The bill, known as the Professionals and Technologists Examination Act (專門職業及技術人員考試法), was altered under the principles of fairness and reciprocity to confer appropriate validation to foreign-issued accreditations. The government hopes this will continue to enhance Taiwan’s appeal as a friendly working destination.

Provisions added to the bill stipulate that proficiency exams can be conducted on paper or orally, and will be available in Chinese and English.

The new law will sit alongside a number of other measures the Taiwanese government has taken over the past year to attract foreign talent to the island. In February, Taiwan launched the Employment Gold Card which incorporates a work permit, residency visa, alien residency permit and re-entry permit, as well as several perks including income tax reductions.

Taiwan currently faces a talent imbalance, according to reports. Most Taiwanese leaving the country to seek employment have higher education degrees that allow them access to professional jobs, whereas most foreigners entering Taiwan are non-professionals.

Young Taiwanese talent has been enticed abroad, particularly to China, by the promise of higher pay and better working conditions. The government therefore has a gap to fill so that Taiwan does not lose its competitive edge in the international arena.

It is hoped that the efforts the government has taken to attract foreign talent will go some way towards resolving the imbalance.