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Naturalization process expedited for Plum Blossom Card holders

2019/01/24 22:07:57

Image for illustrative purposes only / Image taken from Pixabay

Taipei, Jan. 24 (CNA) The time required for holders of Taiwan's Plum Blossom Card to become naturalized Taiwanese citizens has been reduced by four or five months under a revised regulation, the Ministry of the Interior (MOI) said Thursday.

The decision to expedite the process was made earlier in the day during an MOI meeting, based on an amendment to the Standards for Defining High-Level Professionals for Naturalization.

Effective immediately, holders of the Plum Blossom Card can apply for Taiwan citizenship without having to obtain a recommendation letter from the government agency in charge of the line of their business, even if they have lived in Taiwan for less than five years, the MOI said.

This will help reduce the naturalization process by four or five months, the ministry said.

Previously, Plum Blossom cardholders applying for citizenship were required to undergo a review by the MOI that was similar to the one carried out by the National Immigration Agency (NIA) to grant the Plum Blossom Card, a special type of Alien Permanent Residence Card.

Highly qualified foreign nationals who have made a great contribution to Taiwan or those who have made an investment of at least US$200,000 in the country are eligible to apply for the Plum Blossom Card. Currently the card is held by 90 foreign nationals in Taiwan, according to the NIA.

Since October last year, the government has been working to streamline the process for Plum Blossom Card holders to obtain Taiwan citizenship.

(By Wang Cheng-chung and Flor Wang)