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This year’s 2013 Expat Explorer survey has given many insights in to expat life around the globe. One of the trends that continue to be highlighted in the 2013 survey, as in previous years, is the growing economic confidence of the emerging and frontier markets where expats are able to enjoy the benefits of growing economies that have performed well since the 2008 financial crises.
To help further investigate this trend of expat satisfaction outside of developed countries, this year’s Expat Explorer survey looked at emerging markets which have been grouped as the BRIC countries (Brazil, Russia, India and China) whilst using the acronym VITM (Vietnam, Indonesia, Turkey and Mexico) to signify the young and dynamic frontier economies which is a variation on the widely used acronyms CIVETS and MIKTs.
The 2013 survey found that expats in both emerging and frontier markets are upbeat about the state of their host country economy with nine in ten (93%) expats in BRIC countries and 68% in VITM countries satisfied with the local economy against a global average of 56%. This economic confidence is reflected in job opportunities with expats generally less concerned about job security (only 26% of expats in BRIC countries and 29% of expats in VITM countries are concerned about job security compared to a global average of 39%).
Many expats in these growing markets tend to move for a short period of time and often for career opportunities, as reflected in the higher number of expats looking to move home - 19% of those in BRIC countries are looking to move home against a global average of 11%. This short termism means that expats generally have less concern about local economic factors such as house pricing. The VITMs in particular are presenting expats with exciting opportunities for career progression and development. Over half (53%) of the expats living there agree that these countries are getting better as a place for expats to live and work, almost twice the global average of 32%; possibly a reflection of stronger confidence in the local economy influencing business decisions to relocate staff.
Lower prices along with increased job opportunities for expats combine to give expats in emerging markets greater disposable income. Nearly six in ten (59%) of expats in BRIC countries and 55% in VITM countries have more disposable income against a global average of 49%. Despite the positive view of their economies and more disposable income, expats positive economic outlook does not always translate in to personal earnings, particularly in the VITM countries where only 39% of expats agree that they earn more than they could in their home country against a global average of 53% and a BRIC average of 56%.
Overall the growth experienced in emerging and frontier economies has meant that these countries all score well in the Expat Economics league tables, particularly for disposable income with Russia, Vietnam and Indonesia all scoring in the top 10 for disposable income.
Find out more about the 2013 Expat Explorer Survey and look at data for specific countries here.