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Statutory annual leave

Statutory annual leave in China is generally granted based on an employee’s work tenure, as demonstrated in the below table:

Statutory Annual Leave

Work Tenure

Days Leave

Less than one year

No leave

1-10 years

5

10-20 years

10

Over 20 years

15

From the table we can see employees whose work tenure is less than one year will have no statutory annual leave. However, it is important to note that the work tenure is not limited to the length of time that an employee has worked for their current employer, but rather refers to their cumulative work years with all previous and current employers.

Employees may not take paid annual leave under the following circumstances:

  • Where an employee is legally entitled to a summer and/or winter holiday that is longer than their annual leave;
  • Where an employee takes at least 20 days of personal affairs leave and the salary is not deducted according to the company rules of the employer;
  • Where an employee whose accumulated working time is more than one year, but less than 10 years, takes sick leave of at least two months;
  • Where an employee whose accumulated working time is more than 10 years, but less than 20 years, takes sick leave of at least three months; and
  • Where an employee whose accumulated working time is at least 20 years takes sick leave of at least four months.

Child-related Leaves

Child-related leaves in China include prenatal check-up leave, maternity leave, breast-feeding leave for female employees, paternity leave for male employees whose wife has given birth, and childcare leave for those whose child is under a certain age. The exact number of days of child-related leaves vary from one province to another. By law, employees are entitled to be paid as normal for these leaves, or even higher in the case of maternity leave.

Sick Leave

Employers usually have considerable autonomy in deciding how many paid sick days it would like to give employees in a year. However, there are stricter rules when it comes to the recuperation period, a specific type of sick leave in which the employer cannot terminate the employee suffering from non-occupational sickness or injury and is responsible for paying a proportion of salary by law. The regulations on recuperation period are made at the local level, which vary from one province to another.

Marriage Leave

In China, newly-wed employees are entitled to marriage leave – extra days of paid leave. Although there is no clear law on how many days of marriage leave an employee can get on the national level, every region in China offers employees who get married at least three days of leave, by referring to the marriage leave requirements to the state-owned enterprises. Many regions in China tend to offer extra marriage leave, with Gansu and Shanxi – which offer 30 days – the most generous.

Public Holidays

The General Office of the State Council usually releases official holiday schedule for the next year in December. China’s 2022 official national holiday schedule is as below:

In China, employees are entitled to paid leave for the below public holidays:

  • New Year – 1 day;
  • Spring Festival (Chinese New Year) – 3 days;
  • Tomb Sweeping Day – 1 day;
  • Labor Day – 1 day;
  • Dragon Boat Festival – 1 day;
  • Mid-Autumn Festival – 1 day;
  • National Day – 3 days.

As is traditional, the holiday schedule features two major week-long holidays: Spring Festival (also known as Chinese New Year) and the National Day holiday.

In 2022, Spring Festival falls between January 31 and February 6, and the National Day holiday falls between October 1 and 7.

Employers should note that Saturdays and Sundays are often connected with the national holiday to make it longer, or marked as additional official work days to compensate for adjusted longer breaks around the national holidays.

For example, in 2022, Saturday, January 29 and Sunday, January 30, are designated as official workdays to partially offset the seven days off for Spring Festival.

To be noted, despite employees can take longer break after the national holiday break being adjusted, the triple pay for working on national holidays can only be granted to the original national holiday days stipulated by law, such as one day for the New Year and three days for the Chinese New Year. Working on the adjusted breaks will only be granted double pay for overtime.

Private companies in China, however, have the right to determine their own schedules – that is, allow for additional days off – so long as the official holiday calendar is maintained.

China’s 2022 official national holiday schedule

New Year

  • January 1 to 3, 2022 (three days in total; Saturday to Monday)

Spring Festival (Chinese New Year)

  • January 31 to February 6, 2022 (seven days in total; Monday to Sunday)

  • Adjusted working days: January 29, 2022 (Saturday) and January 30, 2022 (Sunday)

Tomb Sweeping Festival (Ching Ming Festival)

  • April 3 to 5, 2022 (three days in total; Sunday to Tuesday)

Labor Day

  • April 30 to May 4, 2022 (five days in total; Saturday to Wednesday)

  • Adjusted working days: April 24, 2022 (Sunday) and May 7, 2022 (Saturday)

Dragon Boat Festival

  • June 3 to 5, 2022 (three days in total; Friday to Sunday)

Mid-Autumn Festival

  • September 10 to 12, 2022 (three days in total; Saturday to Monday)

National Day

  • October 1 to 7, 2022 (seven days in total; Saturday to Friday)

  • Adjusted working days: October 8, 2022 (Saturday) and October 9, 2022 (Sunday)

China Public Holiday 2022 Schedule
Date Name Type
January 1, 2022 Saturday New Year’s Holiday National holiday
January 2, 2022 Sunday New Year’s Holiday National holiday
January 3, 2022 Monday New Year’s Holiday National holiday
January 29, 2022 Saturday Adjusted working day Working day on weekend
January 30, 2022 Sunday Adjusted working day Working day on weekend
January 31, 2022 Monday Spring Festival Holiday National holiday
February 1, 2022 Tuesday Spring Festival Holiday National holiday
February 2, 2022 Wednesday Spring Festival Holiday National holiday
February 3, 2022 Thursday Spring Festival Holiday National holiday
February 4, 2022 Friday Spring Festival Holiday National holiday
February 5, 2022 Saturday Spring Festival Holiday National holiday
February 6, 2022 Sunday Spring Festival Holiday National holiday
March 8, 2022 Tuesday International Women’s Day Half-day holiday for female employee
April 3, 2022 Sunday Tomb Sweeping Festival National holiday
April 4, 2022 Monday Tomb Sweeping Festival National holiday
April 5, 2022 Tuesday Tomb Sweeping Festival National holiday
April 24, 2022 Sunday Adjusted working day Working day on weekend
April 30, 2022 Saturday Labor Day Holiday National holiday
May 1, 2022 Sunday Labor Day Holiday National holiday
May 2, 2022 Monday Labor Day Holiday National holiday
May 3, 2022 Tuesday Labor Day Holiday National holiday
May 4, 2022 Wednesday Labor Day Holiday National holiday
May 7, 2022 Saturday Adjusted working day Working day on weekend
June 3, 2022 Friday Dragon Boat Festival National holiday
June 4, 2022 Saturday Dragon Boat Festival National holiday
June 5, 2022 Sunday Dragon Boat Festival National holiday
September 10, 2022 Saturday Mid-Autumn Festival National holiday
September 11, 2022 Sunday Mid-Autumn Festival National holiday
September 12, 2022 Monday Mid-Autumn Festival National holiday
October 1, 2022 Saturday National Day Holiday National holiday
October 2, 2022 Sunday National Day Holiday National holiday
October 3, 2022 Monday National Day Holiday National holiday
October 4, 2022 Tuesday National Day Holiday National holiday
October 5, 2022 Wednesday National Day Holiday National holiday
October 6, 2022 Thursday National Day Holiday National holiday
October 7, 2022 Friday National Day Holiday National holiday
October 8, 2022 Saturday Adjusted working day Working day on weekend
October 9, 2022 Sunday Adjusted working day Working day on weekend

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