It’s easier for blockchain experts to move to Hong Kong now

Moving in.
Moving in.
Image: AP Photo/Vincent Yu
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Hong Kong is opening its doors to blockchain professionals.

The government this week updated a list of criteria for its points-based migration program so it now awards bonus marks for a number of occupations, including blockchain experts.

It doesn’t explicitly name blockchain, but buried in a bullet point detailing the innovation and technology experts who qualify are specialists in “distributed ledger technologies” as well as “experienced professionals in Fintech.” In total, the 11 professions listed—including waste-treatment specialists, naval architects, and vinyl-pressing engineers—are supposed to reflect the talents that Hong Kong needs most.

First established in 2006, Hong Kong’s Quality Migrant Admission Scheme sets an annual quota for 1,000 people each year, and their visas aren’t dependent on them securing local employment to live in the city.

Out of a maximum of 225 points, the program’s general-points test requires a minimum score of 80, but a far higher score is likely needed to actually qualify. Under the new guidelines, people who work in one of the 11 specified fields can earn an additional 30 points. (There’s also an achievement-based points test for people with exceptional accomplishments, such as Olympic medalists and Nobel Prize winners.)

The general-points test generally rewards youth (people over 50, for example, are given zero out of 30 possible points for age), advanced degrees (70 points maximum), and work experience (55 points). The rubric is as follows: