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Tuesday, December 13, 2011

An Exodus of the Rich?

[This is a guest post by Milo Vejraksa]
Recently published studies have shown that there is an increasing trend of migration among skilled workers.  A study by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) has shown that international migration of highly educated people from above middle income nations rose by 44% between 2000 and 2006, with low income nations showing an increase of cross-border movement of 28%.  These numbers do not include nations within the European Economic  Area. BBC News notes that a new field of relocation firms has arisen to help facilitate the movement of the highly educated workforce in the world today, including the firm Brookfield Global Recruitment Services.
Brookfield conducts annual surveys among its 250 corporate and business clients, helping them to relocate 50,000 people a year around 110 countries.

Its latest survey concluded that 61% of them expected to transfer more employees in 2011 than last year. ECA's (Employment Conditions Abroad) own survey has produced similar figures, suggesting that companies will grow their expat workforce 67% over the next two years.
It seems as if the demand for services is driving these professionals to relocate.  Shortages of trained and experienced people in developed nations of the world are increasing, following the unwillingness of companies to invest in youth during the peak baby-boomers working years.  This has created a “skills gap”, mainly existing in the nations of the UK, US, and Australia, however, the fast expansion in developing markets in nations such as Brazil, India, and China are also drawing in expatriate professionals.  

There is also a demand for employees educated in the environmental sector, as the discipline of green energy expertise is developing tremendously.  These new opportunities to work abroad could serve as somewhat of a “brain-drain” for developed countries in economic distress, especially in Europe. However, this wave in migration is not set to last long, as corporations and businesses are slowly filling up these positions for the next generation of the emerging economy. 

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