The Sydney Morning Herald reports on China’s plans to reverse the brain drain that has seen one million of its students sent abroad, with two-thirds not coming back:
“It has been a great loss for China – which is now in dire need of people of expertise – to see well-educated professionals leave after the country has invested a lot in them,” the official newspaper China Daily quoted one of the report’s authors, Li Xiaoli, as saying.
A Chinese report gives some more details. There are an estimated 35 million overseas Chinese (of mainland origin or descent) spread over 151 countries around the world, with the most being in Europe, Canada, the US, and Australia. In the 1990s, 460,000 mainland Chinese emigrated to the US. From 2000-2005, another 355,000 emigrated to the US.
According to these media reports, the original Chinese Academy of Social Science (CASS) 2007 Blue Book on Global Politics and Security also states that the main reason that people leave and then don’t come back is that there aren’t enough opportunities in China.
If you read Chinese you can check out this thread from Baidu—one of many on the internet, in various forums—on this issue.
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