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Expert calls for international talent policy overhaul

Friday,Dec 09, 2016

From: China Daily


Wang Huiyao,the President of the Center for China and Globalization, China’s largest independent think tank

Editor’s note: With increased participation in global governance, China now has an urgent need for international talent, as Dr Wang Huiyao tells us here in a Q&A with China Daily website.

Dr Wang is the President of the Center for China and Globalization and a counselor to the State Council who focuses on researching China’s international talent policy.

Q: As an expert on China’s international talent policy, what are the priorities authorities should focus on right now?

Wang Huiyao: To set up a comprehensive international talent agency is urgently needed right now under the direction of a more widely-open and inclusive strategy.

Now facing the tremendous economic transition of global governance, China, as one of the strongest advocates of new global co-operation, it is imperative that it woos more talents abroad to meet the talent requirements of promoting or leading multi-national organizations or initiatives like the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, G20 or One Belt One Road.

The alien population ratio is now about four out of 10,000 in China which is far below from the world average of 300 out of 10,000, while the figure in India is 15 times more than in China.

Q:For a long period, graduates who study abroad and overseas Chinese have been targeted as the resource of international talent for China. Do you think this trend will change in the future?

Wang Huiyao:Yes, this trend will definitely change and it ought to meet China’s diverse demand for alien talent to help engage in world affairs more deeply and widely over time. The non-ethnic Chinese group will play a more important role in China’s human resource bank in the future.

Q: How can China overcome the obstacles to introducing more foreign talent into government agencies, enterprises and think tanks?

Wang Huiyao:Chinese government organs and think tanks should actively send more staff to cross-border organizations as interns or temporary workers in order to strengthen our international governance abilities and uphold our interests during the formation of new global rules. Meanwhile, more intelligent foreigners like those overseas Chinese and professionals should be encouraged to work for the Chinese public bureaus and non-government organizations like think tanks.

Q: With the rapidly aging population, what preparations should China be making to bring in more skilled workers from neighboring countries to offset the shortage of labor force?

Wang Huiyao: China should accommodate more skilled labour like high-end trained nurses, babysitters and household attendants who are now in dire need, especially among big Chinese cities from ASEAN (Association of South East Asian Countries).

Moreover, this inflow of professionals could also motivate domestic vocational education which has been left behind during the current misguided educational system geared towards skilled training.

A sound environment is also important to facilitate small business start-ups who could supply an abundance of high or middle-level serving positions.

Q: What do you think of the current foreign talent reform and what would you expect next?

Wang Huiyao: We absolutely have made breakthroughs as we have seen recently. More pilot programs have been undertaken in cities like Beijing and Shanghai which are also hailed by expats working in China.

More bold policies should be adopted and the threshold for international talent should be lowered further, then China could take advantage of the bonanza of global human resources.

Q: What can we learn from developed economies about their foreign talent policies?

Wang Huiyao:A specific agency for the service of citizenship and immigration should be set up given the experience of the United States, Singapore and other countries which are top destinations for international talent.

For different targeted groups, we should choose multiple tactics to attract them. We could learn from India’s ’Indian card’ for overseas Indians and forge our ’Chinese card’ for those 70 to 80 million Chinese and their offspring.

In addition, we could copy Singapore to become a nation headhunter to search for human resources across the world. (By Nie Ligao)

From China Daily,2016-12-8