The Expat Job Market in China




With the current state of the global economy, China is even more important for foreigners wishing to work in China. 8% growth is stabilizing, infrastructure has vastly improved, and foreign investment has never been easier (relatively speaking of course).

This means that many foreigners are looking to China for the next phase of their careers, but so are many overseas Chinese. At the same time, the skills of domestic Chinese are steadily improving, especially the ability to speak English. Actually, many companies prefer to hire foreigners who can speak good Chinese. This means that there are a lot of opportunities for foreigners in China who have the skills to take advantage of it.

10 years ago expats could easily get a job in China just because they were so rare, but now your passport is no longer enough. The job market is maturing and the real question for many employers is, “Is foreign experience and education worth the higher salary, especially if they don’t speak Chinese?” But if the candidate is proficient in Chinese, this can be very attractive for employers. The Chinese doesn’t need to be fluent, just strong enough to work independently in most situations.

If you don’t come to China with an overseas company, there are many companies in China that are looking for foreign talent, especially those Chinese companies who are looking to enter foreign markets or do business with foreign clients. And expats with Chinese proficiency are still in the minority, so many positions are available for the right candidate.

Chinese language skills are doubly important for getting things done. Make sure you’re prepared for the challenges and opportunities that you will encounter in China.



Here are some key vocabulary related to navigating the job market in China:

interview          miànshì               面试

CV/resume      jiǎnlì                     简历

experience       jīngyàn                 经验

to recruit           zhāopìn                招聘                     

job fair              zhāopìnhuì          招聘会                                


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