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China's new Foreign NGO Management Law

China’s new Foreign NGO Management Law will come into effect on 1 January 2017.

All non-profit, non-government overseas organisations operating in China will have to register their offices or activities with the Ministry of Public Security (MPS).

This Law covers a broad range of organisations including charities, think tanks, trade associations, academic institutions, sports clubs and chambers of commerce. The law applies to organisations based in China and those who wish to carry out activities in China or fund Chinese NGOs. NGOs who do not register or report activities under the law will not be able to legally operate or donate funds to Chinese NGOs.

The law states that the activities of foreign schools, hospitals, natural science and engineering technology research institutions and academic organisations with Chinese equivalent organisations will not be included under the law. If however these organisations have non-profit, non-governmental status and work with other types of Chinese organisation then these activities will be covered by the law.

Organisations based in China who are not currently registered should apply for temporary activity permits if they wish to legally carry out activities prior to registering a representative office.

If you think you or your organisation may be affected by the law, you should consider doing the following:

  • Read the Law and check the available information on the websiteof the Chinese Ministry of Public Security (MPS)

    • including the online service portal : 

    • implementing guidelines:

    • and the list of approved professional supervisory organisations:

  • Speak to a lawyer. We maintain a list of lawyers in China on our website.