Article 1 These rules are formulated in accordance with the Insurance Law of
the People’s Republic of China, and for the purpose of strengthening the
administration of representative offices of foreign insurance institutions
(hereinafter referred to as “representative offices”), and meeting the needs of
the opening up of China’s insurance market to the outside world.
Article 2 Foreign insurance institutions hereof referred to in these rules are
those insurance companies, reinsurance companies, insurance intermediaries,
insurance associations, and other insurance organizations incorporated outside
the territory of the People’s Republic of China.
Representative offices hereof referred to in these rules are both
representative offices and general representative offices established by foreign
insurance institutions within Chinese territory for the purpose of conducting
such non-operational activities as liaison service and market research etc.
Chief Representative hereof referred to in these rules is the principal
responsible person of the representative office, and the general representative
is the principal responsible person of the general representative office.
Article 3 Representative offices shall abide by Chinese laws and regulations
and related regulations made by China Insurance Regulatory Commission
(hereinafter referred to as “CIRC”) and their legitimate rights and interests
are protected by Chinese laws.
Article 4 CIRC is authorized by law and the State Council to perform
regulatory responsibilities over the representative offices.
Under the authorization scope of CIRC, the local branch offices of CIRC take
general regulation of those representative offices that are located in their
jurisdictions on behalf of CIRC.
Chapter Ⅱ Application and Establishment
Article 5 Foreign insurance institutions (hereinafter referred to as “the
applicant”) applying to establish a representative office shall satisfy the
(1) Good business performance;
(2) No record of any major violation of laws and regulations within three
years prior to the application date;
(3) Other prudential requirements stipulated by CIRC.
Article 6 The formal application form for the establishment of representative
office is provided by CIRC.
Article 7 The applicant shall submit the following documents:
(1) The formal application form;
(2) A letter of application addressed to the Chairman of CIRC and signed by
its Chairman of the Board of Directors or General Manager of the concerned
(3) A photocopy of the business license or the certificate of authorization
for insurance business, or the registry certificate issued by the relevant
regulatory authorities of its home country or territory;
(4) Articles of association and the name list of the members of the Board of
Directors, management personnel or principal partners;
(5) Annual reports of the last three years prior to the application;
(6) A letter of permit issued by the competent authority of its home country
or territory allowing it to set up a representative office in China, or a letter
of recommendation from the industrial association of which the applicant is a
member, and both types of letters shall contain information about the penalty
records of the applicant received within three years prior to the application;
(7) A power of attorney signed by the Chairman of the Board or General Manager
for the chief representative designated;
(8) The resume of the designated chief representative and other relevant
(9) Other documents and materials required by CIRC.
The photocopy of the business license or the certificate of authorization for
insurance business, or the registry certificate shall be subject to notarization
certified by the applicant’s home country or territory or verification by the
resident Embassy or Consulate of the People’s Republic of China in the
applicant’s home country or territory.
(2) If the document is incomplete or does not comply with regulatory formats,
the applicant shall be informed on the spot or within five days of all the
required corrections at one time. If the applicant is not informed of such
information in this period, then it is assumed that the application is accepted
for review on the day it is received by CIRC;
(3) If the document is complete and complies with regulatory formats, or after
the applicant, upon request, has submitted additional documents and made
necessary corrections, then the application shall be accepted for review.
Whether or not CIRC accepts the application for review, CIRC shall issue a
written document with designated stamp and date indicated.
Article 9 Within 20 days from the date of receiving the application letter,
CIRC shall make a decision on whether or not to approve.
If the decision can not be made in the said 20 days, at the approval of the
Chairman of CIRC, the said period can be extended 10 more days and the applicant
shall be informed of reasons for the extension.
If CIRC decides to approve the application, it shall issue an approval
document; in case of disapproval, CIRC shall state reasons in a written
Article 10 After a representative office receiving the official document of
approval, it shall register with the State Administration of Industry and
Commerce in line with relevant rules.
The representative office shall move into its official premises within three
months from the date on which the approval document is issued;
the approval document shall automatically become invalid if the said deadline
is not observed.
Article 11 Any foreign insurance institution that has already established no
less than two representative offices in China shall be allowed to apply to CIRC
to appoint one of its representative offices as a general representative office.
Article 12 In applying to appoint the general representative office, foreign
insurance institutions shall submit a letter of application addressed to the
Chairman of CIRC and signed by its Chairman of the Board of Directors or General
Manager of the concerned insurance institution.
The application for setting up a general representative office is subject to
the same rules governing the application of a representative office.
Chapter Ⅲ Supervision and Administration
Article 13 The official title of the representative office shall be arranged
in the following order: name of the foreign insurance institution + name of the
city where the representative office is to be located + representative office;
The official title of the representative office shall be arranged in the
following order: name of the foreign insurance institution + general
representative office in China.
第十四条 代表机构除主要负责人外，其他主要工作人员应当称 “代表”、“副代表”。
Article 14 Except the principal responsible person, other major staff members
shall be entitled “Representative” or “Deputy Representative”.
Article 15 Employees of representative office shall abide by Chinese laws and
regulations, with high integrity and clean record.
Article 16 A general representative shall have a work experience above 8 years
and hold a junior college degree or a higher academic degree;
a chief representative shall have a work experience above 5 years, and hold a
junior college degree or a higher academic degree.
Without a junior college degree, the general representative or chief
representative shall have a work experience above 10 years in the insurance
Article 17 A maximum of three employees of foreign nationality are allowed in
each representative office.
Article 18 A representative office and its employees shall not enter into any
agreement or contract with any legal or natural persons, which might generate an
income to the representative office or the foreign insurance institution it
represents, and shall not be involved in business activities of any kind.
Article 19 A representative office shall have official premises, necessary
office facilities and full-time staff.
Article 20 The General Representative or Chief Representative shall not work
in two or more representative offices or any business institution in China.
Article 21 The General Representative or Chief Representative shall attend to
the daily activities of the representative office on a permanent basis. If he or
she consecutively stays away from the representative office for a period or more
than one month, he or she shall delegate his or her responsibility as the
General Representative or Chief Representative to a person specially appointed,
and submit a written report to the local branch office of CIRC.
Article 22 A representative office shall submit two copies of its annual work
report of the previous year before the end of each February to the CIRC’s local
branch office, who shall then forward the report to CIRC’s head office.
The work report shall follow the format prescribed by CIRC.
Article 23 A representative office shall submit the annual report of the
foreign insurance institution it represents to both CIRC and CIRC’s local branch
office within six months after the end of each accounting year of the foreign
Article 24 If any following major event occurs in an insurance institution
that has maintained a representative office in China, the representative office
shall, within 10 days after the occurrence of the event, submit a written report
to CIRC and copy the report to CIRC’s local branch office.
(1) A change in its articles of association, register capital, and registered
(2) Division or merger or change of top management;
(3) Serious losses resulted in business operation;
(4) Penalties imposed for violations of laws and regulations;
(5) Major regulatory actions taken against it by the regulatory authorities of
its home country or territory;
(6) Other matters which may seriously disrupt business operation of the
foreign insurance institution.
Article 25 In case of changing a General Representative or Chief
Representative, the representative office shall apply to CIRC, and submit the
(1) A letter of application addressed to the Chairman of CIRC, and signed by
its Chairman of the Board of Directors or General Manager of the concerned
(2) Power of attorney of the proposed General Representative or chief
representative signed by the Chairman of the Board of Directors or General
(3) Proof of personal identity certificates, certificate of academic degree
and resume of the proposed General Representative or Chief Representative.
Article 26 If a foreign insurance institution intends to terminate its
representative office’s operation, it shall submit a letter of application
addressed to the Chairman of CIRC, and signed by its Chairman of the Board of
Directors or General Manager of the concerned insurance institution.
Article 27 If a foreign insurance institution intends to change the name of
its representative office, it shall submit a letter of application addressed to
the Chairman of CIRC, and signed by its Chairman of the Board of Directors or
General Manager of the concerned insurance institution, together with other
relevant proving documents about the renaming.
Article 28 Under the situation stipulated in Article 25, Article 26, and
Article 27, CIRC shall make a decision on whether to approve or disapprove of
the application within 20 days from the date of receiving a complete set of
If a decision of approval is made, it shall issue an approval document; if a
decision of disapproval is made, it shall notify the applicant in writing and
give the reasons.
Article 29 A representative office can change its office location within the
same administrative area it resides only.
Article 30 In case of changing, increasing or reducing the number of
Representatives, Deputy Representatives, or foreign employees, the concerned
representative office shall report to CIRC’s local branch office within 5 days
from the date of changing, and submit the proof of personal identity
certificates, certificate of academic degree and resume of the nominated
Article 31 When a representative office is approved to be changed to a general
representative office, the original representative office is cancelled
automatically. The general representative office shall apply to the State
Administration of the Industry and Commerce for cancellation of the registration
of the representative office within one month from the date of CIRC’s approval
within one month from the date of CIRC’s approval.
Article 32 If a general representative office is the only representative
office in China after the insurance institution it represents withdraws all
other representative offices, the general representative office shall be changed
into a representative office.
The general representative office shall apply to CIRC by submitting an
application letter regarding such change signed by the Chairman of the Board of
Directors or General Manager of the concerned foreign insurance institution.
Within 20 days from the date of receiving the application letter, CIRC shall
make a decision on whether or not to approve.
If CIRC decides to accept the application, it shall issue an approval
document; in case of disapproval, CIRC shall state reasons in a written
When a general representative office is approved to be changed to a
representative office, the original general representative office is cancelled
automatically. The representative office shall apply to the State Administration
of the Industry and Commerce for cancellation of its registration within one
month from the date of CIRC’s approval.
Article 33 After a representative office of the foreign insurance institution
is terminated by the CIRC, all the issues left unsettled shall be taken over and
handled by its general representative office in China;
if there is no such a general representative office, responsibilities on all
issues left unsettled shall be taken over and handled by the foreign insurance
institution’s other representative offices in China;
if there is no any other representative office in China, responsibilities on
all issues left unsettled shall be borne by the foreign insurance institution
Article 34 CIRC and its local branch offices conduct general supervision and
annual inspection over the representative offices of foreign institutions in
regard to the following issues:
(1) The completeness of the procedures for the changes made by the
(2) The truthfulness of the documents and materials submitted to CIRC;
(3) The completeness of the procedures for the appointments or changes of
staff members of representative offices;
(4) Whether or not representative offices are conducting business activities;
(5) Other items required by CIRC and its local branch offices.
Chapter Ⅳ Legal Liability
Article 35 Any representative office established without approval, in
violation of certain provisions of these Rules, shall be banned by CIRC in
accordance with law.
Article 36 If a representative office is engaged in financial business
activities in violation of these Rules, it shall be punished by CIRC in line
with relevant laws and regulations.
If a representative office is engaged in profit-seeking operational activities
other than insurance business, it shall be imposed a disciplinary warning or a
fine below RMB 300,000 yuan.
Article 37 If a representative office fails to submit relevant reports or
documents as stipulated in Article 22, 23, 24 of these Rules to CIRC, it shall
be imposed a warning and ordered to make correction by CIRC’s local branch
Article 38 Employees of a representative office being with direct
responsibility for activities violating these Rules shall be imposed by CIRC
with a disciplinary warning and /or a fine below RMB 5000 yuan, according to the
seriousness of the cases.
Article 39 CIRC may issue a disciplinary warning to a representative office
involved in providing false information or concealing important facts.
Article 40 CIRC may order the representative offices, found in violation of
other provisions stipulated in these Rules, to make corrections; those who do
not make corrections within a prescribed time period shall be issued a
Chapter Ⅴ Supplementary Provisions
Article 41 These Rules shall, mutatis mutandis, apply to the representative
offices established in the mainland by insurance institutions from the Hong Kong
Special Administrative Region, the Macao Special Administrative Region, and
Article 42 These Rules shall, mutatis mutandis, apply to the resident offices
of foreign insurance institutions approved to establish in China by CIRC.
Article 43 The terms “above”, “below” and “within” used to indicate a
threshold number shall include the number itself.
Article 44 The approval and reporting periods prescribed in these Rules
concerning licensing and reporting periods refer to working days, which exclude
weekends and public holidays.
Article 45 CIRC shall be responsible for the interpretation of these Rules.
Article 46 These Rules shall be effective as of March 1, 2004, and the Rules
on Administration of Representative Offices of Foreign Insurance Institutions,
issued by CIRC on November 26, 1999 shall be repealed simultaneously.