Philippines has been ranked 24th best place to live and work, just behind the US, which ranked 23rd, and ahead of China, which ranked 26th.
That’s according to the 2019 HSBC Expat’s annual survey, which is based on responses from more than 18,000 expats across 163 markets on three metrics: living, career opportunity, and family life.
The Philippines jumped up the rankings from 26th place last year.
That may come as a surprise to some for a couple of reasons. One of them is that the Philippines has a reputation for sending its own people overseas in droves rather than attracting foreigners who want to live and work there.
The other reason is that the country is mired in violence, which has taken a huge human toll.
Apparently, that isn’t what foreign expats are concerned about. They find it easy to relocate to a country of friendly people and a reasonable cost of living. “With its tropical climate and steadily growing economy, the Philippines is quickly becoming one of the most popular expat destinations in Southeast Asia, “ says the report.
Indeed, the Philippines economy has been booming in recent years. The Philippines’ per-capita GDP was last recorded at an all-time high of 3,063 U.S. dollars in 2018, according to Tradingeconomics.com. And it’s expected to reach $3,277 by 2020. That’s well above the average of $1,653.98 for the period 1960-2018.
Filipinos are doing better in recent years when per-capita GDP is adjusted by purchasing power parity (PPP). That measure, too, reached a record 7,599.19 U.S. dollars in 2018, well above the average of $4969.71 for the period 1990-2018.
Source: Tradingeconomics.com 7/5/2019
Meanwhile, a recent McKinsey Global Institute (MGI) study places the Philippines among the few emerging market economies that are well-prepared to achieve sustained growth over the next decade.
That’s thanks to a rise in gross fixed-capital formation (investment).
Still, the Philippines’ per-capita GDP is equivalent to 23% of the world’s average, which makes Filipinos poor.
Meanwhile, the results of the expats survey should be interpreted with extreme caution. People surveyed are usually more affluent and better educated than the average immigrant, and they are on short assignments. This means that an overseas assignment may be seen as an “adventure.”
And the Philippines is a good place for that, better than China, as other surveys confirm.
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