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Vietnam's skilled workers prefer jobs overseas: report

Vietnam's skilled workers prefer jobs overseas: report
Employees make their way to work at the Samsung factory in Thai Nguyen province, north of Hanoi, Vietnam. Photo by Reuters/Kham

Vietnamese skilled workers are seeking jobs in neighboring countries, according to the employment website Jobstreet.

The site's latest report found 80 percent of departing Vietnamese workers head to Singapore, followed by Malaysia and the Philippines at a combined total of 12 percent.

The site attributed the outflow of Vietnamese talent to low salaries at home.

Skilled Vietnamese workers earn about $380-850 per month, on average -- six times lower than their Singaporean peers, three times lower than Malaysians and 1.5 times lower than Filipinos. Vietnam's average annual income is around $2,200 in 2016, according to the General Statistics Office.

The site says the exodus has left Vietnam's employers struggling to recruit qualified candidates, especially in the fields of marketing and sales.

While a large number of Vietnamese workers sought jobs overseas, senior executives from foreign countries view Vietnam as an ideal place to develop their careers.

A HSBC report published in September called Vietnam Southeast Asia’s second most appealing destination for foreign experts, just after Singapore.

Foreign experts earned $103,000 a year, on average, nearly as high as the figure of Indonesia ($104,000) and slightly lower than Singapore ($139,000).

The top 14 percent of respondents told the sample site they earned over US$200,000 in Vietnam. 

About 35 percent of the respondents reported earning more here than they did at home.