This survey was conducted by the international bank HSBC who took a sample of expats all around the world and asked them what they thought of their host countries and other possible destinations around the world. Fascinating results. Bear in mind that this is subjective and you are free to agree or disagree with others opinions. What I really liked about it, however, is that they took into account that migrants have very different motives for choosing a destination depending on what matters to them at any one point in time. People with children, for example, are likely to rate good schools above ease of starting a business. Here are a few of the results that both surprised and amused me.
- Economic opportunity is not the prime motivator. Expats are likely to rate quality of life, security, healthcare and so on as being just as, or even more important than, money. Canada and Thailand topped the list in offering the best balance of both.
- Expats seem relatively immune to the economic downturns in their host countries.
- China is rated as the most cost effective place to raise children but France is number one for being the very best place to raise children and second in overall lifestyle and well-being (Australia is the first).
- Expats perceive the most complex finance environments to be in the U.S., Germany, Switzerland, India and Brazil.
- When asked about ideal destinations (where folks would like to go) the answers were "Australia (10%), the USA (10%) and Singapore (9%), followed by Hong Kong (7%), Canada (7%), and the UK (5%)."
Much much more on the site. Personally I would not choose a host country based on this study alone but it's a good place to begin to gather information - always a good idea to know before you go. As Benjamin Franklin once said, "Diligence is the mother of good luck."