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China: Entry Ban Lifted for Foreigners with HIV/AIDS

(May 5, 2010) On April 24, 2010, the State Council of China published a decision amending the Implementation Measures of the People's Republic of China Law on Entry and Exit of Aliens (hereinafter “Measures”), which lifted the ban in the old Measures on aliens with HIV/AIDS or leprosy from entering China. (Text of the amendment and the updated Measures [in Chinese], Central People's Government official website, Apr. 27, 2010, available at

The Measures were first approved by the State Council in 1986 and were amended in 1994. Under the old Measures, “an alien suffering from mental disorder, leprosy, AIDS, venereal diseases, contagious tuberculosis, or other infectious diseases” is not allowed to enter China. The new Measures amended this section only, removing the ban on aliens with HIV/AIDS or leprosy, but still prohibiting those with “serious mental disorder, infectious pulmonary tuberculosis, or other infectious diseases which may endanger the public health in a major way” from entering China. Commentators noted that although the new rule lifted the explicit ban on aliens with HIV/AIDS, it may leaves government authorities “some leeway on how to apply the rule,” since “[t]he amended rule did not say whether AIDS/HIV would be among the infectious diseases that people seeking Chinese visas must declare when applying.” (China Ends Entry Ban for Foreigners with HIV/AIDS, REUTERS, Apr. 27, 2010, available at

The amendment took effect upon its publication on April 24, 2010.