More support needed to lure foreign talent
Updated: 2013-03-09 03:33
By Hu Haiyan (China Daily)
China's political advisers have called for more support to attract foreign experts to work in the nation.
"Foreign experts have played a very important role in the transformation of China's economic growth pattern," said Zhang Endi, a member of the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference and a senior official of the China Zhi Gong Dang.
The party is composed of returned overseas Chinese, relatives of overseas Chinese and noted figures and scholars with overseas ties.
"Government authorities should provide more favorable policies, such as introducing more convenient visa and residence policies to attract more expatriate talent," Zhang said.
Zhang, also vice-chairman of the Shanghai Municipal Committee of the CPPCC, said that in recent years China has attached great importance to attracting overseas talent, and some achievements have been made in this area, but progress in some sectors leaves much to be desired.
He was speaking on Friday during a group conference at the session of the 12th Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference National Committee.
He said that compared with some other nations, China still lags behind in some areas to attract expatriate talent. "To further make our talent introduction polices in accordance with international practices, it is very necessary to apply talent immigration measures and introduce more convenient visa and residence policies," Zhang said.
Yang Xueyi, a CPPCC National Committee member and Party chief of Beijing Foreign Studies University, said although there are some challenges in attracting foreign experts and, generally speaking, the number of foreign experts working in China is quite small compared with developed economies, based on its fast-developing economy, China is receiving increased attention from across the world.
"It is certain that many foreign experts will be willing to move to this nation. It is very important to build up a complete and sound system to ensure their work and life is comfortable here," said Yang.
According to Yang, there are 112 foreign experts and teachers at the university, and their numbers will continue to rise as it develops more foreign languages courses.
Besides foreign experts in high-tech industries, such as electronic information technology and biotechnology, China should also introduce more global talent in fields such as the economy and higher education, said Yang.
In 2011, the government introduced the Recruitment Program of Foreign Experts, with a goal of attracting up to 1,000 foreign professionals over 10 years to help boost innovation, promote scientific research and corporate management.
Professionals recruited under the program enjoy many favorable policies, such as subsidies, research allowances, favorable salaries, residency permits, medical care and insurance policies. So far, the project has brought in 94 recruits.
Last year, more than 550,000 expatriate experts were working in China, according to Zhang Jianguo, director of the State Administration of Foreign Experts Affairs.
Zhong Binglin, a CPPCC National Committee member and president of the Chinese Society of Education, said insufficient funds posed another big challenge for the nation in attracting foreign experts.
"Why are foreign experts willing to leave their homeland and work here in China? Ensuring a favorable research and development and living environment is a basic guarantee to attract them to come to work and live here.
"Yet currently, government spending in this sector is far from enough," said Zhong, former president of Beijing Normal University, adding that taking higher educational institutions, for instance, it is impossible for them to attract foreign experts just by relying on their own funds.
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