Hukou reform has long been expected, but a document signed off by Premier Li Keqiang on Saturday gave the precise details for the first time.
Applicants must have lived in the city in which they are applying for at least six months and either have a stable job, stable place to live or be studying at a school.
They will have to provide an employment contract, an official certificate proving involvement in a startup business, a tenancy or home purchase contract, or documents proving study at a school.
Those granted the new residence permits will be allowed access to six ‘basic public services,’ including nine years of compulsory education for children, employment services and basic healthcare.
Under the rules published on Saturday, all cities must follow the new policy but can “enact their own regulations according to local conditions.”