Newspaper article International Herald Tribune

Expats Living in U.S. Are Being Lured Home ; China Is Most Aggressive, According to Report That Criticizes Immigration Law

Newspaper article International Herald Tribune

Expats Living in U.S. Are Being Lured Home ; China Is Most Aggressive, According to Report That Criticizes Immigration Law

Article excerpt

A report from an immigration group led by the mayor of New York was broadly critical of the U.S. immigration system, which it said was slow, inflexible and not synchronized with the nation's labor needs.

The United States is facing intense competition from other countries, especially China, that are seeking to persuade highly skilled citizens who have settled in the United States to return home to start businesses there, according to a report from an immigration group led by the mayor of New York.

"China is proving the most aggressive and ambitious" among the United States' economic competitors in seeking to reverse a brain drain and lure back their scientists, engineers and entrepreneurs, the report released Tuesday by Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg's group, the Partnership for a New American Economy, found.

The report was broadly critical of the U.S. immigration system, which it said was slow, inflexible and not synchronized with the nation's labor needs. "Self-inflicted economic wounds" caused by the system, the report said, discouraged foreigners from investing and blocked foreign students with advanced degrees from U.S. universities from remaining in the United States. The report was prepared by Mr. Bloomberg's group and the Partnership for New York City, a business organization.

Two years ago, China started a program focused on "talent development" to draw in Chinese who studied or worked abroad, according to the report. China is offering bonuses of 1 million renminbi, or about $158,000, to experienced university professors and researchers, particularly in the sciences and technology, who return to teach.

Returning scholars and business people are offered housing subsidies and tax exemptions to locate new enterprises in government- designated districts. One program is designed to attract Chinese expatriates who hold overseas patents in specialized science fields, the report found. China is also recruiting Chinese managers in high- level positions in non-Chinese companies.

A review of the results of the Chinese program showed that 55 percent of Chinese who returned under its auspices came from the United States.

Last year, the study found, about 160,000 students from China were enrolled in U. …

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