China's central authorities have set down a more open policy to attract top-notch foreign talents to help promote the economic and social development and global competitiveness of the nation.
According to the newly unveiled National Medium and Long-term Talent Development Plan (2010-2020), the government will work out favorable policies in terms of taxation, insurance, housing, children and spouse settlement, career development, research projects, and government awards for high-calibre overseas talents who are willing to work in China.
Furthermore, the government will also improve the system for giving permanent residence rights to foreigners, explore the potential of a skilled migration program, and work out measures to ensure a talent supply, discovery and appraisal system.
The national plan, a blueprint for creating a highly skilled national work force over the next decade, aims to transform the country from being "labor-rich to talent-intensive."
Wang Huiyao, vice chairman of Beijing-based China Western Returned Scholars Association, said, "The measures outlined are very attractive. They've touched upon various concerns of talents from overseas including personal and career needs."
"The plan is practical and concrete compared with previous documents," said Wang, who help draft the plan.
A program to hire 1,000 overseas top-notch specialists initiated in late 2008 was also incorporated into the new plan as one of the 12 key projects to be completed over the next ten years.
By May this year, 662 people have been recruited under the program, which gives priority to leading scientists who are able to make breakthroughs in key technologies, develop high-tech industries and lead new research areas.
Xiao Mingzheng, director of the Human Resource Development and Management Research Center at Peking University said, "It's preferable to import talents rather than capital or technology."
"As China strives to adjust its economic growth pattern, it has become more important for it to tap others' 'brains'," he said.
"The new policies reflect China's open attitude to personnel recruitment - that is, the country not only exports talents to serve the world but also enables foreign talents to serve China's development," he said.
China's efforts to attract overseas talents have gone beyond the central government level.
The country recruited about 480,000 talents from foreign countries, Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan last year, according to the State Administration of Foreign Experts Affairs.
And about 50,000 Chinese officials and professionals went overseas for various training programs last year.
Li Yuanchao, head of the Organization Department of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China, said earlier this year, "Top-notch talents are crucial for improving the core competitiveness of a country, a region, and a company."
"Not only should the central government earnestly carry out its talent recruitment program. Local governments should also develop their own programs to create conditions to allow talents to achieve," he said.