Internships in Taiwan - staying legally in Taiwan

Work Permits, Employment Qualifications, Employer Problems
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Internships in Taiwan - staying legally in Taiwan

Postby Madcow » 03 Apr 2006, 17:50

Internships in Taiwan as a foreigner, that is a problem, regarding the visa situation. It's possible to stay in Taiwan legally as a student, working, having a Taiwanese spouse.

Normally the person who wants to do the internship arrives in Taiwan with a visitor visa, 60 days, extendable. Then the person has to extend the visa, using a confirmation of the company/organization he/she is working for. For an internship, there is no remuneration. A normal internship last 3 to 6 months.

I have heard that there is a regulation regarding high tech companies. For an internship with high tech companies it's possible to extend the visa with the confirmation of that company. For other companies, organizations sometimes it's possible sometimes not. Depends on the polics officer. But this is no solution. For a lot of Western companies in Taiwan they don't accept interns because of the visa situation. And just tell the interns to study Chinese and "work" in the company this is maybe also not 100% legal.

What regulations exist? How to plan an internship in Taiwan as a foreigner (not being a student, not having Taiwanese spouse)? To apply for a work permit? Or best would be studying Chinese and doing the internship in the free time (not 100% legal)?
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Internships

Postby Hartzell » 05 Apr 2006, 23:18

Background to the Employment Services Act (ESA)

(a) The Employment Services Act was promulgated on May 8, 1992. The immediate effect of this legislation was to severely restrict work rights to many US citizens and foreigners who had lived in Taiwan for five, ten, or more years, including those married to local Taiwan island citizens. In many cases, they were not allowed to continue in the types of work which they had engaged in the past, and for which they held both experience and other qualifications. Nor was the fact that they were paying income taxes in Taiwan taken into consideration.

1. Another effect of this legislation was that many Taiwanese employers were denied their rights to manage their businesses as they saw fit, and to hire the personnel which they determined could help their businesses grow and prosper. In fact, under the ESA, the
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Postby Madcow » 04 May 2006, 16:49

It's correct that there are no rules for internships of foreigners in Taiwan (so far).

But I have heard that AIESEC Taiwan got a special agreement with the Taiwanese government. If a student got an internship with AIESEC he will get a work permit and an ARC. I think the duration of an internship can last from 2 month up to 2 years. But AIESEC Taiwan can only help 50 students per year and I know that they never reached that number. So a good way to do an internship legally in Taiwan is via AIESEC. Maybe AIESEC is a start, since with AIESEC there is no limitation where a student does his internship, e.g. company, NGO or elsewhere.

But AIESEC is a student organization. And you have first to apply for an internship with them, they decide. Someone can't just apply in Taiwan with a company etc. So it's a bit unfree.

Hope there this will change soon...
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Postby sandman » 04 May 2006, 17:02

AIESEC is recruiting 10 interns this year. They'll be working as foreign language teachers for the Kaohsiung city government. For free.
Why on earth would anyone be willing to do this is beyond me. :loco:
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Postby Lord Lucan » 04 May 2006, 17:34

I believe that once upon a time the Irish employment agency, FAS, had an agreement with the government here that 100 (?) young Irish people (fresh graduates) a year could come here to work for a short while at Acer. They could often be found propping up the bar at the buxiban. All I can remember is that one of them was called John and he was very fond of the drink. Anyone know more?

Moderator's note: I heard that it was Irish whiskey.
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Postby Hartzell » 10 May 2006, 20:10

There was an article about interns in the China Post today.

I don't know how accurate it is ...... and I don't know how long it will remain posted on the China Post website either.

More firms may hire foreign students as interns soon
http://www.chinapost.com.tw/taiwan/deta ... B&id=81937
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Postby llary » 16 May 2006, 19:18

Good thing uncle llary subscribes to the IDIC newsletter, eh?

Foreign Nationals in Taiwan
CEPD Recommends Lifting Restrictions on Foreign National Students Serving Internships in Taiwan

The Council for Economic Planning and Development (CEPD) said yesterday that the government has agreed in principle to lift restrictions that prevent foreign national students from serving short-term internships in Taiwan.

For many years, both the American Chamber of Commerce and the European Chamber of Commerce in Taipei have been lobbying the government to allow foreign students to come to Taiwan to serve short-term internships. Representatives from the chambers said that other countries in Asia, including South Korea, Singapore, and Hong Kong have already lifted restrictions on foreign student interns. The representatives also said that foreign businesses in Taiwan are at a disadvantage from the perspective of human resources because of the restrictions.

The representatives also pointed out that Taiwan's own research organizations also have the need for foreign student interns. The Taiwan government's traditional position has been that allowing foreign student interns would potentially threaten local students' work opportunities. Current regulations stipulate that, for a foreign national to work in Taiwan, a certain number of years must have passed since the person graduated from university or the person must have previous work experience.

CEPD Chairman Sheng Cheng Hu said that the related agencies have agreed to lift restrictions on applications for foreign student interns by companies and corporations, while expanding the regulations so as to allow companies, government-run companies and foreign companies to apply to hire foreign student interns.
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Postby EddieG » 16 May 2006, 20:01

Ilary: Did it say when this takes effect? This could be great! Finally I might find a way to stay here that is productive.
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Postby llary » 16 May 2006, 22:06

EddieG wrote:Ilary: Did it say when this takes effect? This could be great! Finally I might find a way to stay here that is productive.


I'll get on the blower to one of my MOEA buddies and see if they can find out for me. If it's in the IDIC newsletter though, it's definitely going to happen.
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Postby Madcow » 17 Jun 2006, 14:08

Some new infos to the internship situation... seems begining from now to work as an intern in Taiwan should be no problem, some contraints, e.g. company need to have a total sales of NT$ 10 mio. and time of stay up to one year...

"Taiwan Investment Biweekly, June 15, 2006, Issue 47
http://investintaiwan.nat.gov.tw/ idic@idic.gov.tw

MOEA Eases Restrictions on Foreign Student Interns in Taiwan

Announcements
MOEA Eases Restrictions on Foreign Student Interns in Taiwan
The MOEA Investment Commission has announced revised regulations that will allow companies to hire foreign university students as interns. Under the "Guidelines for Companies and Corporations Applying to Bring in Foreign Student Interns to the ROC", companies with business earnings of at least NTD 10 million in the previous year may apply to hire a foreign student intern. Interns must be at the university level or above and are limited to serving one year for a company in Taiwan.

The "Guidelines" were revised by the Investment Commission in response to lobbying by foreign business groups in Taiwan and recommendations made to government agencies by the Council for Economic Planning and Development. The new regulations do away with previous restrictions, which only allowed a small number of high-tech companies to hire foreign student interns.

MOEA state-run corporations and foreign companies in any industry are now eligible to apply to hire foreign student interns, and the guidelines apply to Taiwan companies, foreign and overseas Chinese companies, foreign subsidiaries in Taiwan, foreign companies with offices in Taiwan and businesses in free trade zones.

Foreign student interns are granted a six month stay and are able to extend their term once by six months.

As part of its ongoing effort to improve its services for foreign companies, the Investment Commission will establish a dedicated service window to accept applications for companies wishing to hire foreign student interns.

(Central News Agency, Commercial Times, Eastern Multimedia)"
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