China plans to help about 100 million people without urban ID records to settle in towns and cities by 2020, as part of reforms to phase out its dual-household registration system, the State Council, China’s cabinet, said on Wednesday.
It issued a circular aimed at accelerating reform of the nation’s household registration, or “hukou,” system.
The document said the government will remove the limits on hukou registration in townships and small cities, relax restrictions in medium-sized cities, and set qualifications for registration in big cities.
The rights and benefits of residents who do not have urban ID records in the city where they live should be safeguarded, the document added.
At a press conference on Wednesday, vice public security minister Huang Ming said different approaches will be applied in the hukou system, based on the size and population of a city.
Authorities will set no limits for those who want to settle in small cities and towns. “Anyone who has a legal residence can register for permanent residence, even temporary tenants,” Huang said.
Medium-sized cities with a population between one million and three million will have a low threshold, while megacities with more than five million residents will try to strictly control the influx of new citizens.
People wishing to settle in megacities like Beijing and Shanghai will have to qualify through a “points system” based on their seniority in employment, their accommodation and social security, according to Huang.
Megacities “face a lot population pressure, with an annual floating population of hundreds of thousands,” the official said.