530,000 foreign experts worked in China in 2011

SHENZHEN — A senior Chinese official on Monday addressed the 11th Conference on International Exchange of Professionals and revealed that nearly 530,000 foreign experts were working in China in 2011.

In contrast, the annual count stood at about 10,000 in the late 1970s, when China launched its reform and opening-up, said Zhang Jianguo, director of the State Administration of Foreign Experts Affairs, or SAFEA, at the conference’s opening ceremony.

These imported talents contributed to China’s modernization, especially in cutting-edge science and technology projects, according to Zhang.

He also pledged to invite more foreign talents to China and send more Chinese professionals to train overseas in order to promote mutual benefit and common prosperity.

The SAFEA introduced a national recruitment project in 2011 to secure the services of 500 to 1,000 high-caliber foreign experts in 10 years for key industries.

Under the project, each of the selected overseas professionals will be offered a subsidy of 1 million yuan ($160,300) to cover their living expenses.

Another subsidy of 3 to 5 million yuan will be offered for scientific research, according to previous documents released by the SAFEA.

A total of 94 foreign experts have been enrolled in the project, according to a statement issued at the ceremony.

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