Skilled South Africans are moving to these 9 countries

Skilled South Africans continue to emigrate in droves as they seek opportunities abroad,  leaving behind a country mired in unemployment, endless political wrangling, and corruption that has hampered economic growth.

City Press reported that the trend is expected to continue as skilled workers target job security, citing figures from removals companies.

Removals firm, Elliott Mobility, said it facilitated 2,500 moves abroad in 2018, “and we are expecting an approximately 20% increase,” the company’s Moira Luyckx told the paper.

Luyckx pointed to New Zealand, Canada, Australia, the UK, the US, France, Germany, Mauritius and Panama, as the most popular destinations.

“People are emigrating for job and family prospects. There are also some who are relocated by local and global corporations for their specific skills,” she said.

According to Elliott, clients are aged between 30 and 55, and are 85% white, 5% African and 10% Indian.

Similarly, Stuttaford Van Lines pointed to a 15% increase in families emigrating in 2018, many of whom are skilled workers who transferred abroad within multinational companies.

The removal company told City Press that the UK, Australia and New Zealand, were among the most popular destinations, with the US, Canada, Asia, the rest of Africa and parts of the Middle East, also on the list.

Selling up

An FNB Estate Agent Survey for the third quarter of 2018, showed an increase in the number of people selling properties in order to emigrate.

“The ‘selling to emigrate’ motive for selling is one that we have been watching closely in recent years, given signs of rising ‘social tensions’, along with recent years of economic growth stagnation in South Africa,” said property sector strategist at FNB, John Loos.

“And indeed, our survey respondents have been pointing towards a gradual rise in the percentage of sellers selling to emigrate, from a low of 2% back in the final quarter of 2013 to 8.6% of total selling by the third quarter of 2018.”

Similarly, a survey by Seeff for Sandton and Centurion questioned residents reasons for selling property.

The experts said that 5% of their listings are from people who are emigrating to countries like Australia, the UK, New Zealand and Canada due to personal views about the government, crime and the economic climate.

According to American think tank, Pew Research, at least 900,000 people born in South Africa were currently living in other countries in 2017.

For these South Africans the United Kingdom was the destination of choice, with 210,000 migrants as of 2017.

However, it was closely followed by Australia (190,000) and other popular countries including the USA (100,000), New Zealand (60,000), and Canada (50,000).

According to its latest census data, around 5,765 South Africans moved to Canada alone from 2011 to 2016.

Pew Research

2017 rank Country Migrants
1 United Kingdom 210 000
2 Australia 190 000
3 United States 100 000
4 New Zealand 60 000
5 Canada 50 000
6 Angola 40 000
7 Botswana 40 000
8 Chile 20 000
9 Zimbabwe 20 000
10 Germany 20 000
11 Netherlands 10 000
12 Swaziland 10 000
13 Israel 10 000
14 Portugal 10 000
15 Mozambique <10 000
16 Ireland <10 000
17 Malawi <10 000
18 Switzerland <10 000
19 Namibia <10 000
20 Greece <10 000

Read: Here’s how many South Africans are leaving for New Zealand, Australia and the UK

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Skilled South Africans are moving to these 9 countries