Chinese Law Prof Blog

Editor: Donald C. Clarke
George Washington University Law School

Friday, August 8, 2014

What happens when Chinese citizens take out foreign citizenship?

Here’s an interesting article about the problem (at least it’s so perceived) of Chinese citizens who take out foreign citizenship but don’t tell the Chinese authorities about it.

As the article correctly points out, under China’s Nationality Law, when you voluntarily take out citizenship in a foreign country, you automatically lose your Chinese citizenship. No need to apply; no need to receive permission. If you keep your Chinese passport and don’t tell the Chinese government about your foreign citizenship, that doesn’t mean you’re still a Chinese citizen.

I thought it worth a brief blog post because this subject often comes up, and is often misunderstood, when former PRC citizens who have become foreign citizens get into legal trouble in China. Chinese authorities consistently misrepresented Chinese nationality law, for example, when Huseyincan Celil, a former PRC citizen who had voluntarily taken out Canadian citizenship, was seized in Uzbekistan and extradited to China to face trial.

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Does the article also say that PRC citizens who obtain permanent residency abroad are required to cancel their hukou? If so, what does that process entail?

Posted by: William | Aug 12, 2014 6:15:23 AM

Let's discuss it when you are back !

Posted by: Elaine | Aug 13, 2014 9:07:59 AM

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