It is now official.
The Embassy of the People's Republic of China in Ottawa yesterday officially announced that as of the new year (2019) all Canadian applicants for Chinese visas will be fingerprinted in-person at one of five Chinese visa offices across Canada.
Here is the official statement from the embassy:
"In accordance with China’s related laws and based on the principle of reciprocity, the Embassy as well as the Consulates- General in Toronto, Vancouver, Calgary and Montreal will entrust the Chinese Visa Application Service Centers to collect the ten fingerprints of all visa applicants including Canadian citizens from January 1st, 2019."
All fingerprinting is done at the time of visa application in person at the Chinese visa application centre in Ottawa, Toronto, Vancouver, Calgary, or Montreal.
All applicants must appear IN PERSON to apply and be fingerprinted. Applicant's fingerprints will be collected in person at the Chinese Visa Application Service Centres across Canada. All applicants must attend in order to apply and be fingerprinted.
Ensure you speak with the Chinese visa application centre before making your appointment and undertaking travel to the visa office. You should confirm all details and requirements by telephone first, as Chinese rules and procedures are changing rapidly and without warning.
There are a small number of limited exemptions.
1) minors under 14 years of age at the time of application.
2) seniors over 70 years of age at the time of application.
3) diplomatic or service passport holders.
4) persons with missing or mutilated fingers whose prints cannot be collected.
5) "Those who have applied a Chinese visa with the same passport in the past 5 years in the same Chinese Embassy/Consulate General or Chinese Visa Application Service Center, which has collected his or her fingerprints.
The embassy warns that applicants who forge fingerprints or use other people’s fingerprints will be denied entry to China and will bear all the consequences of fraud. Applicants are required to make an appointment and fill in the application forms online at the official website of the Chinese Visa Application Service Centres in advance. (www.visaforchina.org)