Indians studying in economically developed countries are the most likely among all foreign students to stay back in their host country and join the local workforce, according to a report on international migration patterns by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).
The report titled ‘International Migration Outlook 2022’, released on Monday, provides an overview of trends in international migration flows and policies up until 2021 by putting the spotlight on the countries of origin and destination of students signing up for academic degrees in OECD countries. The OECD is a grouping of predominantly developed economies.
Students from China (22 per cent) and India (10 per cent) account for the largest share of foreign students in OECD countries. The report attributes this to the fact that about a third of the world’s population aged 20-29 live in these two countries.
However, when it comes to staying on in their host countries by extending their study visas or by obtaining work permits, Indian and Chinese students display “remarkably different” behaviours, according to the report. Indian students are not just more likely to stay back on extended permits, but the chances of them holding a work permit five years into their stay is also the highest.
“Students from China and India, the two largest groups of international students in the OECD, show remarkably different retention behaviours. Indian students tend to have a higher stay rate than the overall international student population. The retention behaviour of Chinese students is more diverse, with overall larger shares leaving after their education,” the report said.
A look at the stay rates of Indians and Chinese students who had obtained their education permit in 2015 shows that in nearly every OECD country, including Canada, Germany, Australia, New Zealand, the United Kingdom and Japan, Indians have significantly higher retention rates than the Chinese.
The transition from student visas to work permits also reflects a similar trend, with Indians displaying a faster transition rate than the Chinese.
For instance, in Germany in 2020, the share of Chinese students on study permits among the total number of students who had come to the country in 2015 was 23 per cent, compared to only 10 per cent Indians. This, the report suggests, indicates that most Indians have already taken up work permits.
A look at the Canada-specific numbers makes it clearer. Among the students admitted in 2015, 71 per cent of Indians held a work permit by 2020, compared to 18 per cent Chinese.
In the United States, Indian students have long accounted for the bulk of the direct transitions from a study permit to a temporary high-skilled permit (H-1B).
In 2019, they accounted for 60 per cent of such transitions, up from around 40 per cent in 2010. By contrast, in 2015, Chinese nationals made up 31 per cent of direct transitions, while in 2019 their share was 23 per cent, according to the report.
The report said that compared to students from China, more Indian students are enrolled at the masters or PhD level, and that this might explain Indian students’ “quicker transition to the labour market and shorter period on an education permit”.
Courtesy : The Indian Express