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85% of foreign residents in Shanghai consider leaving China: Survey

Half of foreigners surveyed to leave within 12 months

Sun sets over foggy Shanghai skyline. (Getty Images)

Sun sets over foggy Shanghai skyline. (Getty Images)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — A survey of 950 foreign residents in Shanghai has found an overwhelming majority are reconsidering their future in China due to the recent lockdown.

The survey, conducted in mid-April by local media outlet That’sShanghai, asked 950 respondents a series of questions to get a sense of the mood among the foreign community amid the ongoing lockdown of the city.

Eighty-five percent of foreigners said that the current round of lockdowns in Shanghai has made them rethink their future in China. Of this, 22% want to leave the country as soon as possible, 26% plan to leave within 12 months, while 37% said they are weighing up leaving but are willing to wait and see if the situation improves first.

Those surveyed were not newcomers either — about 88% had lived in China for over three years, while 27% had lived for more than a decade. The roughly 1,000 foreign professionals worked in a variety of different fields, with around half holding a master's degree or a Ph.D.

About a third of respondents (31%) said they plan to head back to their home country. Of those who plan to head elsewhere, 22% said it would be somewhere else in Asia, 12% said Europe, 5% to the Americas, while 14% said other regions of the world.