Provisions on the Administration of Religious Activities of Foreigners within the Territory of the People's Republic of China
Decree of the State Council of the People's Republic of China No.144
Article 1 These Provisions are formulated in accordance with the Constitution in order to ensure the freedom of religious belief of foreigners within the territory of the People’s Republic of China and to maintain the public interests of the society.
Article 2 The People’s Republic of China respects the freedom of religious belief of foreigners within Chinese territory and protects friendly contacts and cultural and academic exchanges of foreigners with Chinese religious circles in respect of religion.
Article 3 Foreigners may participate in religious activities at Buddhist monasteries, Taoist temples, mosques, churches and other sites for religious activities within Chinese territory. Foreigners may preach and expound the scripture at Chinese sites for religious activities at the invitation of Chinese religious bodies at or above the level of provinces, autonomous regions and municipalities directly under the Central Government.
Article 4 Foreigners may hold religious activities attended by foreigners at the sites for religious activities approved by the department of religious affairs of the people’s government at or above the county level.
Article 5 Foreigners within Chinese territory may invite Chinese religious personnel to conduct such religious ceremonies as baptism, weddings, funerals, Taoist and Buddhist rites.
Article 6 Foreigners entering Chinese territory may carry religious printed matter, religious audio-visual products and other religious articles for personal use; if the amount of such religious printed matters, religious audio-visual products and other religious articles is greater than for personal use, it shall be dealt with in accordance with the provisions of the Chinese Customs.
Religious printed matter of religious audio-visual products whose contents are detrimental to the public interests of Chinese society are forbidden to bring into Chinese territory.
Article 7 Foreigners within Chinese territory shall recruit the persons to study abroad to be trained as religious personnel, or come to study or teach at Chinese religious institutions in accordance with the relevant provisions of China.
Article 8 Foreigners who conduct religious activities within Chinese territory shall abide by Chinese laws and regulations, shall not establish religious organizations, set up religious offices, sites for religious activities or run religious institutions within Chinese territory, nor may they develop followers, appoint religious personnel or engage in other missionary activities.
Article 9 Where foreigners conduct religious activities that violate these Provisions, the departments of religious affairs and other related departments of the people’s government at or above the county level shall dissuade or stop them; where those activities violate the control of the entry and exit of foreigners or administration of public security, the public security organs shall punish them in accordance with the law; where a crime is constituted, they shall be investigated for their criminal responsibility by the judicial organs.
Article 10 These Provisions are applicable to religious activities of foreign bodies within Chinese territory.
Article 11 Chinese citizens residing abroad within Chinese territory, Taiwan residents on the Mainland, the residents of Hong Kong and Macao in the inland shall conduct religious activities with reference to these Provisions.
Article 12 The department of religious affairs of the State Council shall be responsible for the interpretation of these Provisions.
Article 13 These Provisions shall enter into force as of the day of promulgation.