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Why are foreigners leaving China?   [Copy link] 中文

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Post time 2014-12-3 20:32:56 |Display all floors

This article, translated from Wenxuecity.com, discusses possible reasons behind the continuing decrease in foreigners choosing to live in Beijing. The article cites pollution and safety concerns as main reasons for the decline; however, it makes no mention of the increasingly tightening visa restrictions, which is certainly a contributing factor to the continuing trend.

As China’s capital, Beijing is the center for foreign embassies, news organizations, foreign companies and all kinds of international artists. Tens of thousands of foreigners have traveled to Beijing to work and live. They are affectionately called laowai by local Beijingers. As early as the reopening of the country in the 1980s, foreigners came to Beijing. Back then they were exotic, and brought different kinds of lifestyles to the city. They have been an important part of Beijing’s internationalization, helping to create international urban spaces like Sanlitun and transform formerly abandoned factories into the 798 Art District.

When looking to measure a city’s globalization by international standards, one important indicator is the frequency of cross-border population movements and the maturity of foreign communities within the cities. Beijing reportedly has 200,000 expatriates living in the city. Data shows that in September of this year, there were about 37,000 long term work visa holders.

According to reports from the Beijing Exit-Entry Administration Bureau, in 2010, about 46,000 foreigners were issued a residence permit for work purposes. This number was nearly 10 percent higher than the number of foreigners with work permits in 2009, and 1.7 times higher than before the 2008 Beijing Olympics. From this data, it is easy to see that the number of foreigners working in Beijing peaked around 2010 and then began to fall.

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Post time 2014-12-3 20:33:33 |Display all floors
Food safety issues and pollution scare foreigners

What made foreigners begin to leave Beijing? The Beijing municipal government wanted to know the answer to this problem. Recently, the Beijing Municipal Bureau of Foreign Expert Affairs met with expatriates in Beijing in an informal setting and talked with them in order to better understand foreigner’s needs in Beijing. Unsurprisingly, air pollution is the primary factor why most people consider leaving, especially for families with young children. Air pollution has also impacted the number of foreign tourists in Beijing. Food safety issues were also a concern for Beijing expats. There are frequent food safety scandals in the city. Many avoid various locally sourced products and the cost of imported food is extremely high – often two or three times the original price. Milk and eggs are difficult to keep fresh when imported. For many Beijing expats, health is an important prerequisite for career development. Many have also noticed issues with their hair and skin while living in Beijing.

Quality and cost of education is also an important issue for Beijing expats. An executive for an American company in China calculated that while his company provides an education allowance of 10,000 USD per child, the tuition for Beijing international schools has reached 200,000 Yuan per year. Therefore, about 150,000 Yuan per child must come out of his pocket every year. This depletes his overseas allowance from their companies as well. He said that expats with children may as well return to the US to work because there is free and relatively high quality public education. In addition, Beijing has a lack of medical resources and bad traffic conditions. These are other areas that need improvement.

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Post time 2014-12-3 20:33:53 |Display all floors
International giants on the move to Shanghai?

During this year’s APEC meeting, foreign dignitaries were greeted with the folk song, “Please stay, guests from far away.” This sentiment from the Beijing Municipal Government is sincere. Beijing fears that the accelerated departure of foreigners will undermine the city’s international competiveness. For example, many of the world’s top 500 companies may in the future move to Beijing’s rival city Shanghai. There are numerous reasons behind the threats to Beijing’s internationalization including environmental issues and pollution, food safety and uneven basic education. These issues do not just affect foreigners but are also a problem for every Beijing citizen. The city has rapidly developed over thirty years and many issues have been neglected for the sake of efficiency. Perhaps the government had anticipated these stumbling blocks on the road to development, but did not expect to have to face them so soon.

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Post time 2014-12-4 01:35:53 |Display all floors
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Post time 2014-12-4 02:23:51 |Display all floors
i sez their main concern is language for communications & there is also home always sweet home no matter what  
a man who uses his hands is a laborer. one who uses his hands and his mind is a craftsman. but he who uses his hands, his mind, and his heart, is an artist...

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Post time 2014-12-4 07:35:41 |Display all floors
raton Post time: 2014-12-4 01:35
most foreigners are leaving because in China there is no dole... you gota work..!

Really

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Post time 2014-12-4 07:36:14 |Display all floors
The West is cleaner, safer and better quality food

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