Applications will be accepted from tomorrow (March 1) for the Hong Kong/Ireland bilateral Working Holiday Scheme which enables young people from the two places to take up short-term employment while on holiday in each other's territory.
The scheme provides invaluable opportunities for young people to gain exposure to a different culture and broaden their horizons.
Under the scheme, young people from the two places may stay up to 12 months in each other's territory for holidays and take up temporary jobs for not more than three months with any one employer during their stay. There will be 100 places per year for both sides.
To obtain a working holiday visa for Ireland, an applicant has to fulfil the following eligibility criteria:
* Be an ordinary resident of Hong Kong and possess a valid Hong Kong Special Administrative Region or British National Overseas passport;
* Be aged 18 to 30 and intend primarily to holiday in Ireland;
* Has the means to pay for his/her return journey and be able to maintain himself/herself while in Ireland; and
* Holds medical and comprehensive hospitalisation and liability insurance during his/her stay in Ireland.
Details on applying an Irish Working Holiday Visa can be obtained from the office of the Honorary Consulate of Ireland at 6/F, Chung Nam Building, 1 Lockhart Road, Wan Chai. Enquiries can be made by telephone at 2527 4897; by fax at 2520 1833 or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Information can also be accessed via their website at www.ireland-china.com.cn.
Details on applying a Hong Kong Working Holiday Visa can be obtained from the website of the Hong Kong Immigration Department at www.immd.gov.hk/ehtml/hkvisas_10.htm.
Hong Kong put in place a similar scheme with New Zealand in April, 2001, and with Australia in September, 2001. Eligible applicants may approach the relevant consulates for application forms and enquiries about details of the schemes.
Ends/Monday, February 28, 2005