Nearly 30% of super-rich Chinese already emigrated
Nearly 30% of super-rich Chinese already emigrated

The China's International Emigration Report (2012)issued yesterday by Beijing Institute of Technology (BIT) and Center for China & Globalization (CCG) indicates that among the private business owners with personal wealth exceeding 100 million yuan, 27% have already emigrated abroad and 47% are considering it. And among those with a net personal value of over 10 million yuan, nearly 60% have finished required procedures for emigration. In recent three years, at least 17 billion yuan of capital flowed outside China, says the report.

US top emigration destination

These Chinese immigrants are generally aged 30-40, and many of them possess higher professional skills, with their overseas investments mainly focusing on real estate and foreign currency deposits. Since 2007, the US has become the top destination for China’s emigration craze, with over 50% of the total Chinese immigrants heading to the US last year, with rich and intellectual elite constituting the majority of the immigrants.

According to the report, education is the No. 1 reason foremigration. Based on related data, over 80% Chinese immigrants made the decision because they think China’s educational level is underdeveloped compared to western countries. They believe Chinese students lack imagination and creativity. Among the 500 top universities in the world, only 12 are based in China.

Also, the report notes that personal wealth safetyis second biggest concern for 43% of the rich people, because they get anxious about China’s future policies. As a result, they prefer to transfer their wealth to another country with more stable and mature policies which could safeguard their personal wealth.

Seeking a better quality of life, right to have more than one child and low tax rates are also cited among the factors behind emigration.

Talent outflow on rise

The annual report also points to the serious problem of talent outflow in the country. China outnumbers other countries in terms of students going abroad for study, with Tsinghua and Peking universities now becoming a bigger source of students for doctor’s degrees in America compared to local students. By 2011, 2.24 million studentsleft China to study abroad and only 818,400 returned. Over 50% of the rich people feel unsafe about their wealth in China. Over 50% of the students going overseas for education choose not to return.

I wonder what happened to our motherland, as some Weibo users jokingly said, “Our motherland now looks more like a stepmother to its children.” The newly released report is the first of its kind—and Chinese government officials should be alarmed by the facts.

“In the west, people (meaning society here) care about people; in China, all we care about is power (权力),” quotes one venerable investigative journalist in China. And I believe this explains China’s current dilemma as suggested by the report—we are losing both money and people.

Poor people would not leave because they could not afford it; rich people aspire to leave even after they have achieved success in the society. Really, our government officials should seriously think about it. China is growing into a big power without a future. 



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