Living in China: Shanghai foreigner influx doubles in five years

The number of expats living in Shanghai and those working in local foreign-invested enterprises almost doubled from 2002 to 2006, according to a Shanghai Federation of Trade Unions report released recently.

Issued every five years, the report said there were a total of 119,876 expatriates living in the city in 2006, compared to 61,610 in 2002. The number of expats working in foreign-invested companies in the city increased from 40,076 to 76,873 over the same period.

The report found local workers’ average salary increased 11 percent annually between 2002 and 2006. The annual wage of local workers on average reached 29,569 yuan (US$4,224) in 2006.

But the report also said the average monthly salary had gone up 9.1 percent between 2006 and April last year to 2,687 yuan.

The number of local workers who were paid less than 2,000 yuan every month decreased from 83.2 percent to 58.1 percent between 2002 and 2006.

The report said the number of workers in the service industry increased four-fold over the past five years, the number in the financial industry increased 65 percent, and the number of real estate industry professionals rose 36 percent from 2002 to 2006.

Those working in state-owned enterprises dropped by 31.7 percent, while the number of staff in foreign-invested companies and Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan enterprises increased 25.6 percent. The survey covered nearly 4,000 local employees.

Itamar Medeiros

Originally from Brazil, Itamar Medeiros currently lives in Germany, where he works as Lead Product Design Strategist at SAP and promotes User Experience Design as visiting lecturer at Köln International School of Design. Working in the Information Technology industry since 1998, Itamar Medeiros has helped truly global companies in several countries (Argentina, Brazil, China, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Mexico, The Netherlands, Poland, United Arab Emirates, United States) create great user experience through advocating Design and Innovation principles. During his 7 years in China, he championed the User Experience Design discipline as User Experience Manager at Autodesk and Local Coordinator of the Interaction Design Association (IxDA) in Shanghai

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