Consular Assistance and Right of Abode in HK(SAR) for Dual Nationals

According to the agreement signed in March 1997 between the United States and the People’s Republic of China regarding the maintenance of the U.S. Consulate General in Hong Kong, all U.S. citizens entering Hong Kong on their U.S. passports after July 1, 1997, including dual nationals, will, during the period for which their status has been accorded on a limited basis by visa or lawful visa-free entry, be considered nationals of the United States by the Hong Kong SAR authorities for purposes of ensuring consular access and protection. Dual nationals are U.S. citizens or noncitizen U.S. nationals who are Hong Kong residents or former residents who are of Chinese descent and born in mainland China, Macau, or Hong Kong.

In practice, dual nationals have been directed to declare their U.S. nationality by presenting their U.S. passports and completing an application for declaration of change of nationality with the Hong Kong Immigration Department. This declaration will result in the loss of Chinese nationality but not necessarily the right of abode. (Note: failure to declare U.S. nationality may sometimes impact whether the United States is able to provide all appropriate consular assistance.) Dual national residents of Hong Kong should declare their U.S. nationality to the Hong Kong Immigration Department. According to the Hong Kong Immigration Department, provisions will also be made to declare one’s U.S. nationality (and renounce Chinese nationality) at Chinese overseas diplomatic and consular posts.

Other non-Chinese nationals may meet the definition of “permanent resident” (having right of abode) if they entered Hong Kong on a valid travel document, have ordinarily resided in Hong Kong for a continuous period of not less than seven years, and have taken Hong Kong as their place of permanent residence before or after July 1, 1997.

Further information on consular assistance can be obtained from the Bureau of Consular Affairs of the Department of State (tel: +1-202-736-4993), or the U.S. Consulate General in Hong Kong (tel: +852- 2841-2211).

Further information on the right of abode in Hong Kong may be obtained from the Hong Kong Immigration Department at its hotline 2824-4055, or via fax (852) 2598-8388, Internet: Immigration Department, GovHK: Identity Cards and Right of Abode, or e-mail: General Enquiry.


Last modified: May 25, 2023