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World – Young professionals shun career opportunities in China or India

19 November 2013

In the next 10 years, the number of employees of companies operating abroad will double, according to a recently published study by PricewaterhouseCoopers. But only 11% of young professionals’ dream of working in India, and only 2% in China, the researchers wrote. Meanwhile, the experience of these countries is valuable, insists Oliver Watson, Managing Director of the UK, North America and the Middle East for Michael Page. "Companies are working around the world. The more languages ​​you know and the more you work with people of different cultures, the greater can be your contribution to the expansion of your company, " he said.

Peter Lacy, managing director of policy-making in the Asia-Pacific region for the consulting company Accenture, states that experience in international markets is a must for current and future business leaders. "Companies of our clients are increasingly transcending national boundaries. Therefore, their requirements for employees are changing.” he explained.

Andrew Caulfield, managing consultant in the legal division of Badenoch & Clark, completely agrees with this opinion. "For example, a lawyer is more in demand if he was working for an international company," says Caulfield.

Popularity, or, on the contrary, the unpopularity of some countries are dependent on the sector. Watson says that financiers will always be the most attractive financial capitals of the world. "London, New York, Hong Kong, Singapore and Tokyo - these are the places where people want to work. Buenos Aires, for example, is considered a less prestigious destination than New York, if you work in the banking sector". For engineers, however, the most attractive regions in the world are the Middle East, and Central and South America. "Engineers are always interested in the country where a lot of money is being spent on infrastructure," he added.

Lacy of Accenture lives and works in Shanghai. He believes that China's a great experience. He likes it here, because he feels himself at the centre of all the important issues facing international business. At the same time, local companies are also trying to expand into international markets - and it is very interesting to work with them. Lacy is convinced that the working in markets such as China, India, South-East Asia, Thailand and Indonesia, has much to teach. "It's a fun experience for me and for my family, the only one in a lifetime opportunity to learn more about one of the most ancient and interesting cultures of the world,". Previously he had been assigned to work in Costa Rica, Latin America and Belgium, but China seems to him quite different.

However, Ben Searls, senior manager of recruitment company Badenoch & Clark, does not see that candidates are eager to work in China or India. He hires people in the financial sector and often observes that young professionals are more concerned about the safety of their families, rather than a career. "Employees who are relocating with the family are most of all eager to move to Australia or the USA, "- he explains.

Experts often refuse to work in a particular country because of the strong cultural differences. They do not want to live and work in an alien environment. "The secret of Australia and the United States lies in the fact that people are, on the one hand, getting experience abroad; and on the other they are living and working in a cultural environment that they are familiar with", says Searles.

Finally, Saudi Arabia also ranks very low on people’s wish lists, especially among women. "In Saudi Arabia, there are masses of jobs, but women are usually not allowed to apply, so they do not go there" says Watson.

“Graduates and employees can express different requests, but they will have to obey the trends of the market and find work where there are more opportunities for development”, said Lacy, adding that apart from China and India, opportunities in Africa are also trending up.

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