OECD data says that there are about 120 million migrants living in OECD member countries. 30 to 35 per cent of these migrants are considered highly educated, which means they have received vocational or academic training.
Among the most common birth countries for highly educated migrants, these shares are a lot higher, however.
For India, which topped the list as of 2015/16 with more than three million highly educated migrants in the OECD, the share of those considered of high education status was nearly 65 per cent. China had a rate of 48.6 per cent highly educated migrants in the OECD – or 2.25 million.
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The Philippines come in rank 3, behind the world’s two biggest countries and ahead of a list of OECD nations, naturally trading highly educated personnel back and forth with each other, especially within Europe. 53.3 per cent of Filipino immigrants to the OECD are considered highly educated, which brings the total to almost 1.9 million for a country of just over 100 million inhabitants. In a paper on the Philippines, the International Labor Organization finds that many of those high skilled migrants – to OECD countries and elsewhere – were health care professionals, especially nurses.
Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Philippines government has put a stop to this brain drain at least temporarily by capping the deployment of newly hired nurses at 5,000 per year.
Around half of Filipino migrants in the OECD chose the United States, forming one of the most important migration corridors identified by the OECD, behind Mexican and Indian immigration to the United States and ahead of Polish immigration to Germany.