Hong Kong’s Quality Migrant Admission Scheme was introduced in 2006 to provide access to this country for certain purposes, including work and living.

As the prime purpose of the scheme is to engage talented individuals, your application would be favorably considered if you can demonstrate your qualifications. How does this scheme benefit you, and what are the eligibility requirements? In today’s article, we shall guide you through every essential aspect of the topic.

What is the Hong Kong Quality Migrant Admission Scheme?

The Quality Migrant Admission Scheme in Hong Kong is a scheme created to grant admissions to adequate foreign talents who intend to settle within the region for certain purposes.

To put it simply, this scheme is introduced to attract proficient professionals who are uppermost in terms of certain merits. All that to source from other countries the supply of expertise that is yet to be available within Hong Kong.

Because the Hong Kong Quality Migrant Admission Scheme is wholly quota-based, candidates would be shortlisted to a preset, finite number, which is normally limited to 1000 each year.

​​Although an applicant’s qualifications are certainly taken into account when assessing the applicant, the assessors have complete discretion on what they decide to do with the outcome.

The selection process: how does it work?

In order to determine whether this scheme is the best fit, you should familiarize yourself with the selection process.

First off, you need to meet a set of several criteria which are referred to as prerequisites, which we will cover in the next section. Following that, you will choose between the General Points Test and the Achievement-based points test.

Both of these 2 selection exercises are different in that they are scored on different benchmarks

  • One is based on the candidate’s several general factors such as age, academic and professional qualifications, and so forth
  • One is based on his/ her achievements

It is uncertain whether you will get a quota allotment, even if your own self-analysis deems you a superior candidate, so study which test is most suitable for you.

Important Note

Important Note

This scheme is only meant for citizens of jurisdictions other than Afghanistan, Cuba, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.

As of the latest update in October 2023, nationals from Vietnam, Laos, and Nepal are now eligible to apply for the QMAS.

What are the prerequisites for the scheme?

To proceed to take the points-based tests, you first need to fulfill the following eligibility criteria:


You must be at least 18 years old when you apply for the scheme

Financial requirement

You are required to financially support yourself, as well as your dependents without resorting to the aid of the government.

Good character

As an applicant, you cannot commit any crime, offense, or wrongdoings of the sort at the time you register.

Language proficiency

You must have a decent command of either English or Chinese (Putonghua or Cantonese)

Basic educational qualification

A competent educational background proven by a graduate degree from a reputable institution is mandatory. Additionally, you must boast expertise in a relevant field, which can be proved by showcasing your experience and achievements.

If all of the above qualifications are met, you shall then be eligible to take either one of the 2 point-based tests.

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How to pass the point-based tests?

In order to know which test is for you, you should first get a clear understanding of them both.

Picking the General Points Tests, the candidates would be assessed on 6 factors. Each is distinct in its nature and varies slightly in the degree to which points are allocated. These factors are as follows:

  • Age with a maximum of 30 points
  • Academic/Professional Qualifications (70 points at max)
  • Work Experience (75 points at max)
  • Talent List (30 points at max)
  • Language Proficiency (20 points at max)
  • Family Background (20 points at max)

Doing quick math, the sum of them is a maximum of 165. And a typical minimum passing mark of 80 is required if you wish to pass this selection exercise.

Meanwhile, the achievement-based points test is tailored specifically for certain individuals who have achieved significant feats or made notable contributions in a given field.

In particular, you either have to:

  • Earn an award that is considered prestigious, namely, Olympic medals, Nobel prize, national/ international awards;
  • Produce works acclaimed by peers; or
  • Make advancement towards your specific fields.


You can utilize this Online Self-assessment tool for quick check.

What are the documents required of the applicants?

What follows is a checklist of documents that you need to demonstrate your qualifications in English or Chinese only:

  • A duly filled application form (either the English or Chinese version)
  • A copy of the personal particulars page found in your passport. You also need to present a copy of your passport page showing the latest arrival stamp or extension of stay given that you are physically present in Hong Kong at the time you apply.
  • A copy of documents demonstrating your financial net worth such as your bank certificate, passbook, the current market value of the real estate, latest audited financial statements, statements detailing the attributes of the current market value of investment items, or statements specifying your outstanding debts.
  • A copy of your language certificate to demonstrate your language proficiency, which could be IELTS or TOEFL for English; or PSC or HSK for Chinese.
  • A copy of each document or credential reinforcing your academic and/or professional qualification or personal achievement, namely, graduate degrees, reference letters, employment contracts, and so forth.

Notably, you would likely be required to submit further supporting documents based on the information provided in the application form or at the discretion of the Immigration Authorities.

How does the application process play out?


Once you have prepared all of the required documents, you might have them submitted directly by post, or in person at the Hong Kong Immigration Department.

One week following the application, you should expect a notification from the Immigration Department, to inform you that your application has been received.


The relevant authority will then perform the selection exercise for quota allocation to allocate quotas to candidates regularly.

Your application would be ranked against those of the other candidates on the basis of the scores that you have accumulated from the points-based test.

As long as you manage to achieve high ranks, you will be considered one of the chosen few qualified for further assessment. After this phase, the immigration department will then consider the socioeconomic needs of Hong Kong, the sectoral mix of candidates, and other factors.

Note that by all accounts, if your field of expertise is not readily accessible in Hong Kong, you would be allotted this hard-earned quota.

The outcome of each selection exercise, including the quota allotment, is published on the website of the Immigration Department. Due to the large number of applications each year, processing them would take a while. It is advisable to revisit the site time and again to stay up to date.

If you successfully secure a quota, you  receive an Approval-in-Principle Letter notifying you of this news. This letter acts as a license allowing you to travel to Hong Kong to attend a face-to-face interview and to submit the originals of documents as required.

Once all of the procedures are completed, the last step is to prove that these documents are legally verified. Then you would be given the formal visa/entry permit under this Scheme.

Renewing the Quality Migrant Visa

Once you get hold of the permit through the assessment under the General Points Test, it will stay valid for up to 2 years and can be renewed for a 3-year extension when you can show proof that you have settled in Hong Kong and made a contribution to the country by joining gainful employment or starting a new business here.

If you have been permitted to stay in Hong Kong for no less than 2 years and your last year’s assessable income for salaries tax purposes equals or exceeds HK$2mil, you would be considered for an extension of stay for up to 6 years.

When admitted through an Achievement-based points test, you would be granted an initial stay of up to 8 years. Should you fulfill a period of stay for at least 7 consecutive years, you would be able to apply for permanent resident status in Hong Kong.

You should manage to file the renewal application with the Immigration Department at least 4 weeks before the visa expires.

Applying for a Dependant Visa

Once your visa application has been submitted successfully and this visa is in place, you are allowed to bring along your family members to Hong Kong by applying for the Dependant Visa.

That being said, only certain dependants are eligible for this scheme, and they are your spouse and unmarried dependent children under 18 years old. You can file an application for each of them on their behalf.

In addition, because the dependants’ visas are tied to yours and so do the length of their stays, they could stay in Singapore as long as your visa remains valid. Under the Immigration Department, the dependents can join schools and seek jobs as normal Hong Kong citizens.

Related reading that would be helpful: What is an Investment Visa in Hong Kong?

Should you have any questions regarding the Hong Kong Quality Migrant Admission Scheme, talk to our consultants by dropping a chat message or sending an email via service@bbcincorp.com

Disclaimer: While BBCIncorp strives to make the information on this website as timely and accurate as possible, the information itself is for reference purposes only. You should not substitute the information provided in this article for competent legal advice. Feel free to contact BBCIncorp’s customer services for advice on your specific cases.

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