Expats in Shanghai to Have More Say

Expatriates who live in Shanghai are to provided with an opportunity to contribute their opinions pertaining to how the city should be run through the establishment of a new “foreign liaison group.”

The new group, which consists of expatriates from places such as the United Kingdom, Russia and South Korea, has been formed in response to the need to form a strong sense of community between expatriates of all nationalities who live in Shanghai. The aim of the organization will be to collate expats’ opinions and concerns regarding the local infrastructure, schools and healthcare in Shanghai with the aim of passing their feedback onto local authorities. The process will work both ways, and the group will also play the critical role of helping the police and local authorities to establish more effective communication links with the expat population.

The initiative was instigated in response to expatriate complaints that they are unaware of the appropriate channels through which they can express concerns about life in Shanghai and/or find that Chinese bureaucracy and language barriers prevent them from expressing their concerns. A Russian woman named Anna who is a member of the group described the initiative as “a better way to set up close ties and communication with city police.”

The project is viewed as important within Shanghai given the city’s prominent expatriate population coupled with the fact that the area is hoping to attract thousands more expat professionals and multi-national companies in the future in its bid to become a true global financial hub.

There are currently around 143,200 foreigners living in Shanghai.