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Top News This Week: Emigration and education are top drivers of Chinese overseas property investments
By Juwai, 24 January 2014
US still prime education choice of Chinese students
A recent survey by EIC Group, a China student recruitment agency, reveals that the US remains an enduring favourite with Chinese students for studying abroad.
While its popularity has slightly waned in percentage, 26.8% of 21,352 Chinese students aged 15 - 36 still picked the US as their top education destination due to its high quality of education — 64.1% cited "education quality" as their reasons for choosing the US.
According to Jin Ran, Chief Marketing Officer of EIC Group, the slight drop could be attributed to the increasing diversity in terms of education opportunities overseas, as well as the fact that specific majors in certain countries offer more value and expertise.
Examples include mechanical engineering in Germany and luxury management in France. However, the US still leads the pack with a 9.5% lead over the second most preferred country, the UK. Other countries increasingly favoured by Chinese students include Germany (+3.6%), Canada (+3.1%), Singapore (+0.6%) and France (+0.3%).
Chinese investors buying properties overseas to establish a new life and business
The "Annual Report on Chinese International Migration 2014"1 reveals that the main motivations behind the spike in Chinese overseas property investments are:
- Desire to migrate overseas for a new life with their family
- New business base in other countries
- Quest for better educational opportunities
- Safe haven for investments
- Better and enriched lifestyle
In 2011, China became the second biggest group of foreign property buyers in the US. US State Department statistics also show the number of Chinese who received a US EB-5 investment immigration visa shot up to 6,124 in 2012 — that's an eight times increase from 2010.
However, European countries are not far behind in drawing Chinese property investor interest for emigrating, especially with relaxed immigration policies due to the recession. With housing prices in the UK predicted to rise as much as 20% - 25% by 2018, more Chinese homebuyers are expected to invest the UK and other parts of Europe, said Michelle Zhou of Savills Property Services (Shanghai) Co. Ltd.2
Besides the UK, French vineyards have also become a popular investment trend among the Chinese.
Other top picks for Chinese real estate investors include Germany, Belgium and London. Portugal and Spain are seeking Chinese investors too, offering Golden Visas that would enable the opportunity to obtain permanent residency.
Sources: 1. Center for China and Globalization & Social Sciences Academic Press; 2. Asia News Network