February 2013 Expat News Archive

Archived Daily Expat News from the Expats Blog Newsdesk...

28 Feb at 6 PM

Expat private healthcare costs to soar in 2017

Expats on overseas assignments consider heathcare one of the most valuable add-ons to relocation packages, but policies and costs can change year by year. In the increasingly unsteady world of 2017, being covered via your employer by a comprehensive private health insurance package is an absolute must. From exotic infections through...
28 Feb at 6 PM

Spanish real estate agents already feeling the Brexit pinch

With Article 50 not even triggered as yet, estate agents in Spain are already suffering Brexit doldrums. At least two years of painful negotiations are on the cards before the UK finally quits the European Union, but businesses reliant on British customers are already beginning to envisage a grim future. Amongst the worst affected are...
28 Feb at 6 PM

New law enforces inheritance tax on UK expat properties

A new UK law due to be introduced on 6 April means the families of deceased UK expats will be forced to pay 40 per cent of total property and asset values in inheritance tax. The rule will apply to non-UK domiciled investors who’ve purchased UK property via an offshore corporate structure and will overturn previous laws on the issue....
27 Feb at 6 PM

Expat adjustments after moving back home

Relocating to the UK after years in expatriate mode can be tricky but, whatever the reasons for returning, adjustment is no fun. Whether you’re returning to the UK at the end of a contract, giving up your expat lifestyle for family reasons or just missing the familiar, it’s essential to take steps to mitigate the shock of changes,...
27 Feb at 6 PM

Expat life in Vietnam made easier by new concierge service

Expats in Vietnam will now find life in an unfamiliar city far easier, thanks to a new city concierge service launched in Hanoi and Saigon. Although it’s now a popular destination for expatriates looking for new jobs and new experiences, it has to be admitted Vietnam is not the most straightforward of expat locations, especially for new...
27 Feb at 6 PM

Protest groups lobby peers before Brexit amendment debate

UK expats in Europe have been urged to lobby members of the House Of Lords over an amendment to the proposed Brexit Bill. The amendment is due to be debated this week in the British parliament’s Upper House, with its aim the protection of the rights of Britons living in EU member states. It demands that, before Brexit is triggered by...
24 Feb at 6 PM

Expatriates deserting Beijing for commuter belt small towns

Rocketing real estate prices, overall cost of living increases, poor air quality and the chaos of the massive Chinese capital are resulting in an expat exodus to commuter belt towns 30kms and more away. For many Western expat working in Beijing, the city’s soaring cost of living is becoming unsustainable on average wages. The giant city...
24 Feb at 6 PM

Expats in Singapore should go for shorter rental leases

Singapore is an all-time popular expat professional destination for its modernity, ultra-cool image and fantastic food, but new arrivals are being advised to take short-term rental leases rather than committing to several years in the same city location. The single, most important downside to Singapore is its incredibly expensive cost of...
24 Feb at 6 PM

Saudization and poor economic growth spells disaster for Western expats

Slowing economic growth and increasing Saudization are hitting hard on expats in the Kingdom. For several decades, a white-collar expatriate job in Saudi Arabia has been seen as a path to wealth and a luxurious lifestyle as well as a sure way for career advancement. Since the dramatic fall in oil prices and the upswing in Saudization,...
23 Feb at 6 PM

UK expats forced back home by Brexit may not have NHS coverage

British MPs have been told UK expat returnees post-Brexit may not be allowed immediate access to the National Health Service. Once Britain leaves the EU and cancels the reciprocal EU health scheme coverage, British pensioners may be forced to return to the UK but may not be entitled to immediate treatment via the National Health Service....
23 Feb at 6 PM

Cambridge University database to inform UK expats on Brexit progress

As a much-needed response to confusing media coverage and the lack of concrete information from the UK government, Cambridge University researchers are creating a factual information database aimed at keeping UK expats in the EU informed about the Brexit process. The new initiative will contain reliable and timely information in order to...
23 Feb at 6 PM

New media and lobbying campaign attempts to force FATCA repeal

A Washington-based campaign headed up by Nigel Green, CEO of the controversial De Vere financial advisory and insurance group, is attempting to force repeal of Obama’s unpopular US Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act. Virtually unknown to the majority of the American public, FATCA has been the cause of havoc in the global financial...
22 Feb at 6 PM

Didi to offer expat aimed English language ride sharing app by summer

Expats in China who were devastated when Uber removed its English language interface after its sale to Didi can take heart that ride-sharing will again be a reaiity in the near future. Some three months after Uber was taken over by Didi Chuxing, its English language interface, ability to work overseas and option to pay with credit cards...
22 Feb at 6 PM

Private dental insurance a must for expats in China

Relocating to many world destinations is easy of there’s a job waiting, together with housing, health and other packages, but it’s not so straightforward if you’re going it alone. Many independent expats are now aware of the need to research healthcare standards in their chosen country, with a good number deciding on private health...
22 Feb at 6 PM

Expat property investors routinely rejected by UK mortgage brokers

At a time when sterling is falling against a basket of foreign currencies, British expats wishing to invest in UK property are being routinely refused mortgages. The recent sharp rise in interest in UK properties by British citizens working overseas is being fuelled by the falling pound and is resulting in increased interest in cheaper...
21 Feb at 6 PM

Survey reveals expatriate feelings about Japanese heathcare

A recent survey involving expatriates working in Japan rates the Japanese heathcare system as better and less expensive than healthcare in their home countries. Just over half the respondents to the Japan Times online survey were more than happy with Japanese healthcare provisions, rating the service higher than that of heathcare in their...
21 Feb at 6 PM

Multiple reports claim post Brexit expats legal status a mess

As the legal problems facing UK and EU expats after Brexit become more acute, multiple media reports suggest the British government will face huge headaches. UK citizens living in EU member states as well as EU nationals in Britain are due to be mired in a terrifying legal quagmire as regards their rights, according to the Financial Times....
21 Feb at 4 PM

Expats in Kuwait protest law restricting them to thre private hospitals

Legal experts and politicians as well as affected expats are criticising Kuwait’s new law restricting expat healthcare to just three private hospitals. Kuwait’s new law obliges expats working in the emirate’s private sector to use only heathcare provided by three named hospitals, but politicians and lawyers are saying the rule is a...
20 Feb at 6 PM

EU expats in UK without private health insurance denied residence permits

As if getting residency in the UK post-referendum wasn’t tricky and time-consuming enough, EU expats desperate to stay in the UK post-Brexit are now being told they’ve been refused because they haven’t bought private health insurance. A little-known piece of legislation requiring EU citizens to purchase private health insurance is...
20 Feb at 6 PM

Singapore scores as favourite UK expat professional destination

The city-state of Singapore is again hitting the headlines as the best destination for relocating expat professionals. Singapore has long been a hub for UK expatriates seeking high salaries, first-world amenities and opportunities to develop their careers, and is a high scorer in related surveys as a result. The latest survey by an...
20 Feb at 6 PM

Spanish PM believes UK expat rights can be preserved

In spite of May’s January rebuttal by EU leaders over UK expat rights, the Spanish Prime Minister still believes a deal to protect Britons wishing to remain in the country post-Brexit can be achieved. Following last week’s report that Spain is luring wealthy expats with generous deals in the hope the revenue will make up for the loss...
17 Feb at 6 PM

Americans in Japan join to fight against Trumpism

As the political chaos in the White House continues, American citizens living overseas are rejecting the Trump administration and getting together to fight against its possible consequences. Whilst Americans in the home country are becoming aware that all is not normal at the top of the Washington political tree, US expats living overseas...
17 Feb at 6 PM

UK expat frozen pensions still under fire in Australia

In spite of many legal and political knock-backs, the fight against the British government’s stance on frozen pensions is still alive and kicking in Australia. The disgrace of frozen pensions has continued over many years, with many thousands of elderly UK long-stay expats living overseas being forced into increasing poverty by the rule....
17 Feb at 4 PM

Crime spree targets expat businesses in Marbella

British expats living and working in the popular resort of Marbella are pressing local police for information about a recent and still ongoing crime wave. Laura Tona, owner of a local sex shop, is the tenth victim of an organised gang active in the area over the past three months. During the break-in, nothing was taken, but others have...
16 Feb at 6 PM

Expat educators in Kuwait to be replaced by Kuwaiti nationals

Beginning in the 2017/2018 education year, the Kuwaiti Education Ministry will replace 25 per cent of its expat workers with Kuwaiti nationals. The purge will stop all recruitment of expat teachers whose specialities are covered by Kuwaitis. According to the Arab Times, the names of more than 450 teachers and 150 technical supervisors and...
16 Feb at 6 PM

US citizens discover the advantages of moving abroad

With increasing numbers of disenchanted US citizens making the move to overseas locations, it’s no surprise that most find their lifestyles and living costs are far better than in the home country. Media reports of an increase in the number of Americans desperate to emigrate after the Trump inauguration are prompting stories of actual...
16 Feb at 6 PM

US expats with IRS tax debt to lose passports

New IRS rules introduced earlier this year mean that Americans living overseas who have unresolved tax debts will no longer be allowed passport renewals. According to the IRS website, certification of details of US citizens with seriously delinquent tax debts is now to be passed to the State Department. Those in this situation will not be...
15 Feb at 6 PM

Portugal named top of world retirement hubs

Already a favourite holiday and relocation destination for the British, Portugal has been named as the top retirement hub on the planet for three years running. Well-known expat relocation website Live and Invest Overseas considers the attractions of the country to be the perfect draw for retirees, especially single women. The Algarve is...
15 Feb at 6 PM

New poll shows four out of five UK expats live in fear of Brexit effect

Survey shows 80 per cent of respondents fear for their post Brexit lives. A survey initiated by the Brussels and Europe Lib Dem group reveals that the vast majority of respondents are living in fear of the devastating effect of Brexit on their families and their lives. The survey, taken by 5,170 Britons living in EU member states, took...
15 Feb at 6 PM

One million signatures needed for push to legalise EU passports to UK expats

The UK expat campaign group Bremain in Spain is joining forces with Choose Freedom Campaign in promoting a European Citizens Initiative seeking a million EU citizens’ signatures. Active in fighting for UK expats’ rights to remain in Spain after Brexit is finalised, Bremain in Spain spokesperson Sue Wilson told the Olive Press the move...
14 Feb at 6 PM

Best Chinese cities for expat alternatives to Beijing

Expats wishing to settle themselves in China but who don’t like the idea of Beijing’s smog, crowds and fast, expensive pace of living might like to consider a few smaller, more laid back Chinese cities. Whilst Beijing is China’s expat hub for foreign starts-ups and lifestyles, not every new arrival in this ancient land wants to...
14 Feb at 6 PM

Spain concentrating on wealthy investors to replace UK expats

Serious concerns about their post-Brexit positions in Spain are forcing an increasing number of UK expats to sell their homes and relocate. The double whammy of Brexit and the falling sterling exchange rate is resulting in many UK expats being forced to give up their chosen lifestyles and sell their Spanish homes. Since the referendum...
14 Feb at 6 PM

Leaked EU document warns backlash against UK expats overseas

As the British government’s total lack of commitment to the plight of UK expats overseas and EU expats in the UK continues, applications for UK permanent residency continue to soar. A leaked EU document is warning the British government’s poor treatment of EU expats in the UK could well result in a concerted backlash against British...
13 Feb at 6 PM

Record number of US expats renounced citizenship in 2016

From a record high in 2015 of 4,279, US expats giving up citizenship and returning their passports surged to 5,411 in 2016, setting a new record. The figures issued by the US Treasury Department show annual increases for the past four years and are thought to be tied to increased activity by the Internal Revenue Service’s hunt for...
13 Feb at 6 PM

Costa Blanca expats meet with British Consul over Brexit

British Consul Sarah-Jane Morris has been touring locations across Spain in an attempt to keep worried Uk expats informed about Brexit. At a meeting in Playa Flamenca Town Hall, Morris did her best to reassure concerned British nationals. but admitted there is much she doesn't know as yet about the progress of Brexit negotiations and...
13 Feb at 6 PM

Scots couple take the 44,000 mile high road from Australia through 35 countries

A Scots couple returning home after spending 11 years living in Australia are taking the self-drive scenic route and visiting 35 countries on the way. After some years working in Australia’s banking and finance sector, Phil and Lisa Armstrong decided it was time to return to Scotland. Unlike most homesick expats whose first priority is...
10 Feb at 6 PM

Financial mistakes to avoid when emigrating

Moving overseas, whether it’s for a new job or retirement, is challenging at best and terrifying at worst, but care and common sense can make sure financial errors don’t ruin the entire experience. The majority of those intending to stay overseas for a good while are stuck with the necessity of packing and shipping their personal...
10 Feb at 6 PM

US expats wait on Trump to keep his FATCA repeal promise

Expat members of lobby group Republicans Abroad as well as their Democrat countrymen are waiting to hear whether The Donald will keep his campaign promise to repeal the unpopular FATCA tax reporting laws. The brainchild of former president Barack Obama, FATCA was introduced in its full form in 2014, with the overall result that American...
10 Feb at 6 PM

Top financial talent set to flee London for Ireland

The Republic or Ireland’s capital, Dublin, is expecting a surge in the number of wealthy expats fleeing the UK after Brexit. For those wishing to remain in an EU member state without having to learn another language, Ireland is the natural alternative and is being talked up by relocation agents as a destination for EU and UK...
9 Feb at 6 PM

Finland tops survey for expat kids education

One of the most important aspects of moving overseas en famille is the childrens’ safety, education and quality of life. Expat parents looking to settle in an unfamiliar country in order to take up a new job or start a small business need to put their childrens’ welfare high on the list of preferences. Finding a good, affordable...
9 Feb at 6 PM

Cambodia surpassing Thailand as expat Shangri La

Overshadowed for years by its next door neighbour Thailand, Cambodia is coming into its own as the preferred destination for expats looking for friendliness, natural beauty, an inexpensive cost of living and straightforward visas. Famed for decades for its spectacular Angkor Wat temples, Cambodia has drawn tourists to its mostly unspoiled...
9 Feb at 6 PM

Top expat professionals deserting Abu Dhabi as economy falters and costs rise

Once the holy grail for top expat professionals, Abu Dhabi’s stuttering economy is now the cause of an exodus of the brightest and best. Top-paying jobs in the emirate were the most sought-after employment prizes for top bankers and other expat professionals during the oil boom at the turn of the 21st century, Nowadays it’s a totally...
8 Feb at 6 PM

The challenges of expat relocation to Sweden

Sweden may not be the most popular expat destination as it has its challenges as well as its charms, but its quality of life is one of the best on the planet. As an expat destination, Sweden tops international survey rankings in the majority of sectors including the all-important global competitiveness and quality of life. However,...
8 Feb at 6 PM

Paris pushing its claim to City bankers

Just as the strong possibility of a hard Brexit looms closer, a French charm offensive has arrived in London to woo financial professionals and bankers. It’s no surprise Paris is putting itself forward as an alternative hub to London for financial services once Brexit severs the passporting ties which come with European Union...
8 Feb at 6 PM

Brexit, austerity and rising taxes likely to increase number of UK expats

Whether Britain faces a hard or soft Brexit, the consequences may drive yet more UK citizens to emigrate overseas. A recent report from the Institute for Fiscal Studies predicts the UK’s tax burden will hit highs not seen for 30 years, causing extended austerity measures, spending cuts and punitive new tax laws. Balancing the nation’s...
7 Feb at 6 PM

Expats in Dubai praise the best transport system in the world

Whilst living and working in the UAE isn’t always a breeze, expats in general are more than happy with the inexpensive, convenient and ultra-efficient public transport system. Getting around an unfamiliar city, especially for recent expat arrivals, is almost always a stressful experience, but those lucky enough to land a job in Dubai...
7 Feb at 6 PM

Scottish government fights for rights of EU expat workers

A study on the economic benefits of migration undertaken by a Scottish parliamentary cross-party committee has determined young migrants are essential for expanding both Scotland’s work force and its population. The committee’s report has backed Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon’s stance on immigration, which contrasts with...
7 Feb at 6 PM

Expat professionals still in high demand across Africa

As Africa struggles to find its place in the 21st century world, expat professionals are in high demand due to skills shortages and a lack of local talent. Many African countries have severe economic challenges even although commodity prices are still very low, with expat professionals in addition to local talent needed to allay skill...
6 Feb at 6 PM

French expatriate numbers increase as election looms

As the French general election draws near, more and more French nationals are voting with their feet and leaving for foreign climes. Unlike the British, the French are not so well known for emigrating, with even those who do traditionally choosing known quantities in Europe where French is spoken. However, over the last several years, not...
6 Feb at 6 PM

British PM closer to deal on UK expat rights in Spain

Last Friday’s meeting between Theresa May and Spanish PM Mariano Rajoy is giving hope to over a million British expats at present living in Spain. The brief meeting in the Maltese capital Valetta during the EU summit gave the two leaders an opportunity to discuss the fate of an estimated 1.2 million British citizens now living in Spain,...
6 Feb at 6 PM

New FCA alert focuses on domestic and international investment irregularities

The British Financial Conduct Authority is planning to crack down on both domestic and international investments and pension transfers, in a move which may benefit expats in the UAE as well as in the rest of the world. Information on the long overdue move by the FCA comes in the form of an alert based on the growing number of expat...
3 Feb at 6 PM

Italy opens doors to wealthy post Brexit expats

In a response to the probable realities of Britain’s exit from the EU, Italy is offering hi-so Britishers tax-free status as residents. Soon after Portugal put in a claim as a haven for wealthy Brit professionals and loadsamoneyed retirees, Italy has joined the rush to provide tax-friendly destinations for disenchanted Britons fleeing a...
3 Feb at 6 PM

Kuwait issues visa ban on five Muslim countries

As part of a plan to tighten immigration restrictions, Kuwait has announced a ban on visas for five Muslim majority states. A week after The Donald announced a travel ban on a number of Muslim majority countries, Kuwait has announced a similar crack-down on the issuing of visas to nationals of Iran, Pakistan, Iraq, Syria and Afghanistan....
3 Feb at 6 PM

US expats urged to avoid FATCA tax filing traps

More than nine million American expats living overseas dread tax-reporting time due to FATCA’s extra filing and reporting requirements. It’s bad enough that the USA insists expatriates pay tax in the home country in addition to having to pay local taxes on earnings in their country of residence. Even worse are the FATCA requirements...
2 Feb at 6 PM

Expat investor fury ramps up after LMIM management cleared by Oz court

Expat investors who lost millions when LM Investment Management crashed in March 2013 were furious when an Australian judge cleared LMIM’s founder of any wrongdoing. Up until several weeks before LMIM, now declared a Ponzi scheme, went into administration, unlicensed financial advisers in Southeast Asia and Australia continued to push...
2 Feb at 6 PM

Irish construction boom prompts pleas for expat workers to return home

Following its forecast of a building boom between now and 2020, the Irish Construction Industry Federation (CIF) is urging expat construction workers to return. During the 2008 financial crash, Ireland saw a mass migration of teachers, medical staff and construction workers seeking new jobs, new lives and higher wages in destinations...
2 Feb at 6 PM

Safety a priority for expat families overseas

Would-be expat professionals researching suitable countries for family life invariably put personal security and safety at the top of their requirements lists. When moving overseas to take up a new job involves taking the family along, it’s essential to consider personal safety and security as a top priority. In today’s increasingly...
1 Feb at 6 PM

EU green card could solve EU and UK expat dilemmas

The founder of the New Europeans group has won the Financial Times Future of Britain award for his suggestion of a new category of citizenship in Europe. Today’s FT article celebrates the group’s founder, Roger Casale, for his innovative suggestion of a European green card for EU expats living and working in the UK and its expansion...
1 Feb at 6 PM

Inexpensive expat boltholes for living the simple life

For those looking to abandon their home countries in order to live the simple life, comparing relative costs of living is a crucial part of the process. Most surveys of expat destinations relegate costs of living to sub-forum status due to the fact that the majority of yearly comparison reports are aimed at expat professionals with...
1 Feb at 6 PM

Expats praise Toulouse as the perfect French destination

France is the second-most popular destination for UK expats after Spain, with the French city of Toulouse one of the loveliest urban destinations in the entire country. Whether retiring, starting a small business or simply looking for a more laid-back lifestyle, France is a long-term favourite with expats, especially those fleeing the...
27 Feb at 12 PM

Nutmeg may offer expats its new pension scheme

After launching an online pension, investment manager Nutmeg has said it may consider offering it to expats living in certain jurisdictions. At present, the new initiative is only targeting UK-based people, but the firm has admitted it is open to the idea of making it available to expats in popular locations such as Australia, New Zealand,...
27 Feb at 9 AM

Irish trekker in Singapore hospital after collapsing in Indonesia

An Irish physiotherapist working in an Indonesian hospital is being cared for in a Singapore hospital after collapsing during a volcano trek last week. Twenty-two-year-old Lisa Orsi, who works in Bright Vision Hospital in Hougang, was hiking up a volcano last Friday when she fell unconscious. She was immediately rushed to hospital, where...
26 Feb at 4 PM

Saudi Arabia approves Chile as domestic helper source

Domestic helpers from Chile will now be allowed to apply for work in Saudi Arabia, announced the country’s Labour Ministry. The workers from the South American country will have seven different roles to choose from – four for men and three for women. The jobs males will be able to apply for are drivers, nurses, housekeepers and...
26 Feb at 2 PM

French expat kidnapped in Yemen was due to leave

A French expat abducted in the Yemeni capital Sanaa was scheduled to leave the country just days later, revealed her employer. Development worker Isabelle Prime, 30, had been working for Ayala Consulting in the Middle Eastern country on a World Bank-funded initiative advising the government on its social welfare programme. The firm’s...
25 Feb at 6 PM

UK: Changes to pension tax to affect expats

British retirees looking to cash in their pensions could benefit because of changes to the rules regarding withdrawing lump sums that will be introduced in April. The new regulations do not require a person to buy an annuity, while an added bonus for those wanting to take out large amounts before moving overseas is that there will be a...
25 Feb at 3 PM

Expats see rise in pension income but it remains lower than a decade ago

Retired Brits overseas are currently feeling the benefits from the pound’s strengthening, but two-thirds are not as well off as they were 10 years ago. Pension payment firm Equiniti, which deals with more than 60,000 retired Brits abroad, said that expats are currently enjoying a boost in income due to the rise of the pound, but most...
24 Feb at 6 PM

Canadian expat missing for a month in Costa Rica turns up unharmed

After his whereabouts were unknown for a month amid a suspected kidnapping case, Canadian expat Ryan Piercy turned up at his him in the Costa Rican capital San Jose on Saturday, announced the country’s Judicial Investigation Police (OIJ). Forty-five-year-old Piercy disappeared on 20 January in suspicious circumstances. His wife’s car...
24 Feb at 4 PM

Foreign female journalist dies in Pakistan

An expatriate female journalist stationed in the Pakistani capital Islamabad has died of suspected natural causes. Early reports state that Maria Golovnina, who was Reuters news agency’s Bureau Chief for Pakistan and Afghanistan, was found at the media outlet’s office in the city’s F-8 sector on Monday. The exact cause of her...
23 Feb at 4 PM

More than 1,000 people form ‘ring of peace’ outside Oslo synagogue

Over 1,000 people congregated outside Oslo’s main synagogue on Saturday to form a “ring of peace” in support of the city’s Jewish community in the wake of recent anti-sematic attacks across Europe. The event, which was organised by a group of young Muslims living in the Norwegian capital, was aimed at showing people that Islam was...
23 Feb at 12 PM

Police in Saudi Arabia detain more than 300 expatriate workers

Saudi Arabian police arrested 330 illegal foreign workers on Wednesday following a number of raids in districts across the capital Riyadh. A police spokesman said the next day that among the districts involved in the operations were Deerah and Batha. Thirty beggars - most of whom were from Yemen - and 40 Ethiopian women were among those...
20 Feb at 12 PM

Thailand: French expat attack linked to deadly Russian kidnapping

Police on the Thai resort island of Phuket have yet to investigate reported links between a violent hatchet attack on a French expat and a Russian abduction case. Eric Seigneurin, an expat who runs the Blue Garden Resort and Spa in Cherng Talay, sustained four-inch-deep wounds to the back and side of his head after being attacked with a...
20 Feb at 9 AM

More students opting to study in New Zealand

The number of foreign students opting to study in New Zealand is higher than it has been for four years, according to official figures. The figures show that between January and August last year there was a 12 per cent rise to around 10,100 in student numbers compared to the same period the previous year. The numbers mean foreign students...
19 Feb at 4 PM

Search for missing Brit in Portugal widens to Spain

Police searching for a missing British expat in Portugal have said that he may have crossed over the border into southern Spain. Thirty-one-year-old Jon Edwards, originally from Arbroath in eastern Scotland, lived in the southwestern Portuguese town of Lagos but hasn’t been seen since September. Two days before disappearing, Edwards...
19 Feb at 4 PM

Spain: UK expat raising awareness about carbon monoxide poisoning

A British expat whose sister died of carbon monoxide poisoning is trying to raise awareness in his adopted homeland of Spain, where three times as many people die from inhaling toxic fumes than they do in the UK. English teacher Adam Samuel, 33, lost his sister Katie five years ago after she inhaled toxic fumes. Carbon monoxide is a...
16 Feb at 4 PM

Phuket barman charged after attacking non-paying expat

A barman on the Thai resort island of Phuket has been charged after attacking a British expat with a baseball bat when he said he didn’t have the money to pay his bill. Thirty-seven-year-old Sarawuth Kongphat, who works at the Green Leaf Bar in Rawai, beat Christopher Stark so badly upon being told that he had run out of cash that he...
16 Feb at 2 PM

Fewer Indonesian maids to work in Malaysia

Indonesian President Joko Widodo has said he wants to cut the number of domestic workers travelling overseas and instead provide employment for them at home. President Widodo has told the Manpower Ministry to look into the current situation regarding domestic helpers and come up with ways of providing job opportunities for them in...
13 Feb at 12 PM

Dubai expat buys UK number plates in new business venture

A Scottish expat living in Dubai has bought 35 “Arab-related” UK number plates in the hope that he can sell them on to wealthy Middle Easterners living in high-end areas of London. Tom Milne, who runs an oil rig equipment supply company in the Emirate, explained that he noticed how much some of the plates were going for and decided...
13 Feb at 9 AM

Spanish police Facebook assisting expat drivers on Facebook

An officer from Spain’s Guardia Civil has been publishing valuable driving tips for expats living in the Iberian country. Around 3,000 foreigners living in Spain have already used the social media page for tips on driving in the country after it was set up by Francisco Morales, a police officer in Torrevieja. His decision to set up the...
12 Feb at 6 PM

Channel Island-based bank sees rise in demand for buy-to-let mortgages among expats

Expat buy-to-let mortgages are on course to surpass local lending at the Channel Island-based bank Skipton International this year after only launching midway through 2014. British expats looking to purchase property often have problems getting a mortgage, but Skipton reports that the expat mortgage scheme is recording the fastest new...
12 Feb at 3 PM

Brit arrested for killing suspected paedophile in Spain

A British expat has been arrested in Spain suspected of killing a German man he caught filming his daughter with a single punch. Witnesses in the restaurant in the upmarket resort of Sotogrande where the incident occurred, said the man was 40-year-old Kainth Davinder. They claimed he grabbed an iPad out of Sandro Rottman’s hand and...
12 Feb at 12 PM

Japanese expat in Australia killed in shark attack

A Japanese expat living in Australia has died after being attacked by a shark of the coast of New South Wales. The 41-year-old man, who has yet to be named, was surfing in the water near the town of Ballina on Monday when the attack occurred. Witnesses were able to pull him to shore but their efforts to save him were in vain because of the...
12 Feb at 9 AM

Bahrain plans to remove illegal expat workers

Bahraini officials are to launch a crackdown on what they believe is tens of thousands of illegal foreign workers in the Gulf country. A key reason there are so many illegal foreign workers in Bahrain is because of visa rules that allow foreigners to buy two-year visas for around US$4,000 and enter the country without the guarantee of...
10 Feb at 2 PM

Twice the number of Chinese people leaving the country than arriving

Two times as many Chinese people are quitting the country and heading for pastures new than the number of expats returning home, according to a recent survey. Moving firm UniGroup Relocation revealed that the US topped the list of preferred countries among Chinese expats, while Germany, Singapore and France completed the top four. The...
10 Feb at 9 AM

Starbucks launches in trendy Bucharest expat neighbourhood

US coffee shop chain Starbucks is aiming to attract expats living in the Romanian capital Bucharest by launching one of its high-end outlets in the city’s Pipera district. Starbucks Reserve Strip Mall is to open its first shop under the brand in the Eastern European city on 12 February, confirmed the company, as it continues to expand...
9 Feb at 4 PM

Ecuador again scores highly in expat index

Ecuador has been named the best place to live and work as an expat, according to a recent InterNations survey. The report, The World Through Expat Eyes, quizzed more than 14,000 people on why they relocated, how life abroad was and how happy they were, and found that the South American country came out on top ahead of Luxembourg and Mexico...
9 Feb at 2 PM

Kiwi expats educating London on haka

A group of New Zealanders in London aim to teach fellow Kiwis about the history and tradition of the haka, insisting that drunken people attempting to perform it is disrespectful. The Kiwis took to the street on the UK capital’s annual Waitangi Day in which hundreds of people partake in a pub crawl and perform hakas as a way of paying...
8 Feb at 2 PM

Expats make up 78% of Saudi workforce

Saudi Arabia’s 11 million-strong workforce consists of 78 per cent foreign workers and just 22 per cent locals, according to recent data. Economic analyst Ihsan Buhulaiga explained that many Saudis work in public sector positions because of the careers on offer and the various privileges associated with such jobs, while others take on...
8 Feb at 11 AM

Neve Campbell to star in Swedish expat comedy

Hollywood actress Neve Campbell will star in four episodes of Greg Poehler’s Welcome to Sweden, a comedy about expats living in Sweden. The actress will play Diane, an American who has been sent to the Scandinavian country’s capital, Stockholm, to take up a marketing management role at a bank. Poehler described the news that...
7 Feb at 12 PM

UK: Electoral Commission urges expats to register to vote

Britain’s Electoral Commission has launched a campaign to urge citizens living overseas to register to vote in time for the general election on 7 May. The UK High Commission in the Cypriot capital Nicosia noted that it was the first British election in which people could register online to cast their votes, adding that it hoped the...
7 Feb at 9 AM

UK expats in California flocking to buy Cadbury’s products

British nationals in San Francisco are panic-buying boxfuls of Cadbury’s chocolate products amid fears that supplies will run out. Briton David Kidd, owner of the city’s You Say Tomato import store, noted that there were empty boxes on the shelves as people were coming in and buying in bulk of late. He said that in the past week...
6 Feb at 12 PM

Bangladesh to send 500,000 maids to Saudi

The government of Bangladesh has announced that it is set to send half a million qualified housemaids to Saudi Arabia once the two countries have finalised an expatriate recruitment agreement. A source from the Ministry of Labour in Saudi Arabia said that a delegate will travel to the Bangladeshi capital Dhaka to finalise the agreement,...
6 Feb at 9 AM

Expat landlord in Spain wins court case against non-paying tenant

A British expat landlord in Spain has won a lengthy legal battle against a tenant who failed to pay rent for two years. Sixty-six-year-old Dave Lomas from Middlesbrough can finally breathe a sigh of relief after his non-paying tenant was ordered to move out of the premises in Campillos, southern Spain, by 10 March. This came after a...
3 Feb at 11 AM

British residents in Turkey could have permits revoked

UK expats residing in Turkey face having their permits cancelled if they spend more than 120 days outside the country, states a new ruling by the Turkish government. For many years, a popular choice of living among the roughly 40,000 British expats in Turkey has been to spend most of the year in the Eurasian country before heading...
3 Feb at 9 AM

Indian expat in Australia uses Bollywood excuse to avoid stalking conviction

An Indian expat in Australia avoided being convicted of stalking women by saying that love stories from Bollywood movies led to him acting the way he did. Sandesh Baliga, who lives in the island state of Tasmania, was accused of excessively approaching and stalking women, but managed to escape conviction by blaming his country’s film...
2 Feb at 6 PM

British expats on Phuket burgled

Two British expats on the Thai resort island of Phuket were burgled on Friday evening, with money and valuables being stolen. The expats, who lived with their partners in Mission Heights in Thekrasattree, were not the first to be burgled in the area this year, with three other expats suffering the same fate in Bang Rong, just a few...
2 Feb at 2 PM

GCC to ban criminal expats from entering region

The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) wants to establish a database to ensure it can block expats with criminal records from entering the region. The six-country block wants the proposed joint database initiative to provide accurate information on foreign workers seeking employment in Saudi Arabia, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Oman,...
28 Feb at 6 PM

Good news for expats wanting UK mortgages

After several years of being left out in the cold by UK mortgage providers, expats hoping to purchase a home in their country of origin may now get a result. UK buyers living overseas have been ineligible for mortgages from high street building societies and bank for some time, with the only answer being to engage an specialist...
28 Feb at 6 PM

Polls show expat swing towards lifestyle rather than career

Tradtionally, embracing the expat life was more likely to involve a better job with a higher salary than a lifestyle choice, but two recent surveys indicate a major change in the motivation to move overseas. The first online poll was undertaken on behalf of an international insurance company and surveyed 1,000 expats in various overseas...
27 Feb at 6 PM

QROPS numbers soar along with increased enquiries

The number of QROPS now on the market has hit a record high of 3,230, with a new product being released almost every day and more legislation enquiries than ever before. The increase in enquiries about the legislation pertaining to QROPS is believed to be due to a lack of incentives to keep pension pots in Britain as well as a need to...
27 Feb at 4 PM

Pattaya property scam overturned by Thai court

Endless online warnings about buying condos in Thailand off-plan have been based on Pattaya’s Emerald Palace property scam, but the tables would now seem to have been turned in favour of the actual owners. Promoted by Brit developer Richard Haughton, firstly through Harlequin Thailand and later through Haughton’s Thailand Property,...
26 Feb at 6 PM

Missold annuities scandal will take several years to fix

Figures disclosed to a UK newspaper earlier this week have proven that a high number of pension savers have been mis-sold annuities by their insurance companies. Although government regulators are aware of the rip-offs, it’s estimated that it will take several years to reform the system. Ten international insurers offer higher pension...
26 Feb at 6 PM

UAE expats warned to select brokers carefully before rule changes

Stricter UAE consumer protection legislation concerning insurance brokers is to come in next November, and is expected to result in smaller firms quitting the market. A statement from the UAE Insurance Authority’s financial regulator has conformed that, from November this year, updated rules will apply to every financial broker company...
25 Feb at 6 PM

Surging sterling gives dilemmas over expat incomes

The surge in the £ sterling over the last few months has seen the currency bounce upwards by more than 10 per cent, in contrast to a good number of other currencies seen to have moved in the opposite direction. The gloomy outlook at the beginning of 2013 has slammed into reverse, with the pound faring better by far than the dollar and...
25 Feb at 6 PM

Kiwi dreams are tops for would be expats

With more than a million UK citizens choosing to live abroad and potentially a million more dreaming of following, New Zealand rates highly in a poll of the most desirable destinations. Recent research revealed that Britain exports as many expats as it imports immigrants, with over a million UK ex-residents celebrating global mobility by...
24 Feb at 6 PM

Expat parents hit hard by soaring school fees

Most expat parents living and working overseas do their best to get their children an international education, but the soaring costs of private school fees are becoming hard to meet. A recent study by a leading expat bank has revealed that, however hard expat parents try to give their children the stability of a private school education,...
24 Feb at 6 PM

Dublin ranks 34th in latest global expat living standards survey

A recent league table rating 223 global cities for their expat quality of life has placed Dublin at no. 34, with European cities continuing to dominate the ratings. Unsurprisingly, the result of the survey, carried out by international consultancy firm Mercers, showed European world cities at the top of the list, with Vienna coming in at...
21 Feb at 6 PM

Inflation beating rates being offered by retail bonds

Expat investors tired of searching for fixed rate investments at above their host countries’ current inflation rates are turning to retail bonds for comfort. Bonds as such are not just the province of the extremely wealthy, as investments can start at the low thousands or ever low hundreds of pounds. Retail bonds are relatively new kids...
21 Feb at 6 PM

Campaigners urge UK expats to vote in EU elections

Less than three months from now, Britons will vote in the European Parliament elections, with the 5.5 million British expats living overseas urged to register and make their views known. At present, a tiny minority of overseas British citizens are registered to vote, according to the UK’s Electoral Commission, which has launched an...
20 Feb at 6 PM

Financial regulators labelling pension liberation as fraud

The UK’s consumer watchdogs and various financial regulators are attempting to outlaw pension liberation to the extent that they are describing a legal right as fraud. Retirement savers are allowed to access their pension funds as a pension liberation exercise before their 55th birthdays should they wish to retire earlier, although they...
20 Feb at 6 PM

Lonely expats risk poor mental and physical health

Results of a recent study suggest that regularly feeling lonely in later years can lead to increasing health risks higher than those caused by obesity. Research carried out at the University of Chicago has reveled that loneliness in older people can boost the risk of premature death by as much as 14 per cent. Compared against a previous...
19 Feb at 6 PM

Will new Gibraltar QROPS undermine Guernsey negotiations

Questions are being asked about the future of QROPS offered by Guernsey after two new QROPS were opened in Gibraltar. Concept Group, one of the sector’s largest providers of Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension schemes, has opened two new pensions on Gibraltar aimed at getting back into the lucrative QROPS marketplace. Concept was...
19 Feb at 6 PM

Omanisation to strip a hundred thousand expat jobs

The southwest Asian Sultanate of Oman appears to be following its Gulf State neighbours in announcing that 100,000 expats jobs are to be removed and given to locals. An announcement Monday by Oman’s Minister of Manpower, Sheikh Abdullah bin Nasser al Bakri, affirmed a planned move to reduce the number of private sector positions filled...
18 Feb at 6 PM

EU law to forcesmillions of expats to declare confidential financial information

A controversial bill being proposed by EU lawmakers will make declaring confidential financial information held by trusts compulsory. The aim of the proposed legislation is to stop corporate money-laundering, but will catch expats and EU member state residents in its net. To the EU, trusts have much less wide implications than is usually...
18 Feb at 6 PM

Republican FATCA protest spreads worldwide on social media

Initiated by the Republican party, the protest against the US government’s Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) has spread across the world via a social media protest site. The controversial tax information-swapping agreement, supported by President Obama, is intended to clamp down on US citizens living abroad as well as resident...
17 Feb at 6 PM

Expat financial preparation for a disaster scenario abroad

Over the last few years, disaster has struck in many countries, with Japan’s earthquake and tsunami, the war in Syria and the Libyan conflict prime examples of scenarios which can severely affect expat residents. Natural disasters and political meltdowns can disrupt every aspect of expat life including financial security and access to...
17 Feb at 6 PM

Middle East anti-foreigner measures may be softening

Kuwait and Saudi Arabia’s u-turn on the proposed expat stay restrictions may indicate that the Arab world’s crackdown on foreigners is easing. The Gulf States’ recent attempts to reduce their numbers of foreign workers in order to provide jobs for nationals has been seen by many as prejudicial and ultimately dangerous for their...
14 Feb at 6 PM

UK Financial Conduct Authority slams pension industry as fundamentally flawed

A damning report by Britain’s financial watchdog has declared the country’s £14 billion pension industry as not fit for the purpose. The report wasn’t entirely unexpected, with media articles surfacing over the last few months accusing the industry of scamming pensioners and warning of an official investigation. The FCA report,...
14 Feb at 6 PM

Saudi bans women from hospital visits without male guardians

Saudi Arabia’s Council of Senior Scholars has banned women from visits to medical clinics or hospitals unless they are accompanied by a male guardian. The new rule was issued by the kingdom’s Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice, and followed an edict by the council prohibiting women being seen by male...
13 Feb at 6 PM

Should expat investors panic over QROPS delistings

Speculation over QROPS delistings by HM Revenue and Customs has been clouded in secrecy, with the authority giving no reasons, but there’s no need to panic in most cases. During 2013, literally dozens of QROPS have been opened and later closed, with HMRC steadfastly refusing to give any reasons for its actions, even although it's fully...
13 Feb at 6 PM

Shock horror as expats across Europe lose all Brit TV channels

After the BBC’s satellite switch last week, wails from Southern Spanish expat hubs could be heard for miles as aficionados realised they’d probably watched Eastenders for the last time. The initial new satellite coverage map issued by the BBC showed a swathe of Europe covered by possibly less satisfactory signals, but at least they...
12 Feb at 6 PM

UK tax office warns Britons not to fall for bogus tax refund emails

HM Revenue and Customs is warning all British taxpayers to ignore emails promising bogus tax refunds. The ongoing scam involves emails being sent by the thousands to British taxpayers, stating that tax refunds are due and providing a link supposedly to an official form requesting details of bank accounts and credit cards. HMRC is urging...
12 Feb at 6 PM

Expats in Hong Kong forced to move to suburban areas as rents soar

Expatriate workers in Hong Kong are being forced out of the central area by rapidly rising rents. Estate agents in the city are reporting strong demand for rental apartments in less expensive outlying areas of the city from expatriate workers whose leases have expired. Landlords are taking advantage of the city’s soaring rents, and...
11 Feb at 6 PM

Expats on frozen pensions furious at newly-announced changes

Expats living in countries where their UK state pensions are frozen are reacting furiously to the latest discriminatory statement by the British government. News that the state pension paid to retirees living in the UK will rise by around £1,000 by the year 2020 has reignited the debate in expat destinations from Australia to Canada via...
11 Feb at 6 PM

UK government to scrap reciprocal healthcare plan with EU countries

The British government is about to scrap part of the reciprocal healthcare agreement which ensures UK citizens can receive free healthcare in other EU countries. At present, expats and visitors who need healthcare in other EU countries such as France and Spain and do not qualify via employment are entitled to the service for free. As part...
10 Feb at 6 PM

Expat investors advised to proceed with caution on overseas investments

With UK interest rates still at a miserable level and US stocks struggling since the start of 2014, investments in emerging markets may be tempting may expat investors. Investing in overseas emerging markets was expected to increase after the turn of the year, but the sector has taken a beating for a number of good reasons. Tepid...
10 Feb at 6 PM

Survey shows UAE expats spend too little time with their children

Results of last month’s survey of expat parents in the UAE has revealed that, on average, expat parents spend far less time with their children than their parents spent with them. The study involved 1,200 respondents, and the results are worrying as regards the development of expat youngsters. Expat parents spend as little as 50 minutes...
7 Feb at 6 PM

Expat investor hopes dashed over higher fixed rate interest

Last year’s promise of light at the end of the tunnel as regards fixed term deposit low interest rates seems to have been extinguished, leaving expat savers with a dilemma. Late last year, the UK government’s announcement that bank borrowings under the Funding for Lending Scheme could no longer be used to finance residential mortgages...
7 Feb at 6 PM

BBC satellite switch worst news for Costa del Sol expat viewers

The long awaited BBC switch to its new satellite was expected to improve UK channels and possibly affect overseas viewers, but Costa del Sol expats didn’t expect to lose the free service entirely and are making their views known. The migration of the service to the Astra 2E satellite is expected to be followed by Channel 4 and ITV as...
6 Feb at 6 PM

Expats considering a QROPS transfer should watch out for sharks

As QROPS become more popular with expats looking for a tax-effective, flexible retirement option, advice on how to negotiate the financial advisory industry’s shark infested waters are on the increase. The UK’s HM Revenue and Customs sets strict rules for the 42 countries which offer QROPS, but the problem for investors nowadays is...
6 Feb at 6 PM

Spain still popular for lifestyle and low property prices

The British love affair with Spain is still as hot as ever, in spite of the infamous property scandals, demolitions and scamming developers. As in decades past, the main attractions are the laid-back lifestyle and welcoming, warm weather, although the huge drop in property prices over the last several years also has its attractions. A new...
6 Feb at 6 PM

Saudi labour ministry offers ways to hire more expats

Companies who have successfully adopted the Saudization conditions have been offered seven ways to hire more overseas workers. During a meeting with business owners in the kingdom, Labour Minister Adel Fakeih told listeners that the ministry will continue allowing the transfer of expat services from red zone companies to green zone...
6 Feb at 3 PM

Saudi government announces freeze on expat public contracts

A devastating announcement by the Saudi government that all expat public contracts are to be frozen has sent shock waves across the kingdom’s foreign communities. Abdul Rahman al-Barrak, the Saudi Minister for Civil Services, has announced a freeze on all expat posts until qualified Saudi staff can be found. Last year, almost 12,000...
4 Feb at 6 PM

Algarve property market set for revival in the near future

Analysts are suggesting that Portugal’s devastated property market is showing signs of movement, with the Algarve in particular having all but bottomed out and looking to attract interest in the near future. Prior to 2008, properties in Portugal were priced at higher levels than in most popular holiday home, expat and retiree...
4 Feb at 6 PM

Questions aimed at vetting overseas property developers

Planning to retire overseas is an adventure which should be carefully planned, with buying property abroad needing to be approached with care. Investing in an overseas property as your retirement home is a dream held by most would-be expats, but the dream can easily turn into a nightmare if the right checks aren’t made. Buying into a...
3 Feb at 6 PM

Brit expats pensioners in Europe lose out on winter fuel allowance

The UK government will scrap winter fuel allowances at present received by 92,983 British pensioners living across Europe, thus saving almost £17 million. The controversial plan is the brainchild of Work and Pensions Secretary Ian Duncan Smith, and is causing anger across Europe’s retirement communities for its unjust application. In...
3 Feb at 6 PM

Saudi private schools hiring Saudi teachers to replace expats

As a result of many expat teachers showing reluctance to transfer their sponsorships from family members to employers, Saudi private schools are being forced to employ Saudi teachers. At present, Saudi teachers are a glut on the market, with 76 per cent of the kingdom’s women wishing to be employed in private schools, according to the...
28 Feb at 6 PM

Survey shows Brit retirees spend savings in seven years

A new study reveals that British pensioners are the world’s least prepared for retirement, going though their life saving in as little as seven years. The report, commissioned by the HSBC Bank, states that most UK retirees expect to live for at least 19 more years after they receive their pensions. However, it also states that most have...
28 Feb at 6 PM

Spanish property market uncertainty attracts expat buyers

A combination of the Spanish property scandal, the recession and Spanish unemployment has seen real estate prices crash, with expats now picking up the bargains. It seems that bad news for Spanish homeowners and those who lost out over the still-unresolved expat property scandal has become good news for would-be expats hoping to pick up a...
27 Feb at 6 PM

Kiwi Actors Equity denies immigration consultation delayed The Hobbit

A press release by Equity, New Zealand’s actors’ trade union, denies allegations that its consultancy programme with NZ immigration caused delays to filming. Before filming began on The Hobbit, the prequel to the highly successful Lord of the Rings movie trilogy, fans worldwide were disturbed by reports that filming might be delayed...
27 Feb at 6 PM

Turnaround migrant Brits rush back to the UK

An emerging trend of short-stay migration to Australia prompts an enquiry into why so many UK migrants to the land of sun, space, barbecues and bushlands rush back to chilly Britain. Unlike in the last century, many thousands of Brits who’ve emigrated to Australia to start a new life in the sun are packing up and returning to the country...
26 Feb at 6 PM

Expat Mom demands full voting rights for overseas Britons

A mother of four living on Spain’s Costa Blanca is due to make her demands in Brussels at the ‘Making the Most of EU Citizenship’ hearing. Jacqui Cotterill believes that British expats who have taken advantage of the Freedom of Movement laws in the EU should not be prevented from voting in UK elections. Her speech will be heard as...
26 Feb at 6 PM

Expat currency trading is high risk for the inexperienced

With offshore and onshore banks cutting their interest rates seemingly on a weekly basis, many expats and offshore savers are giving up on chasing the best rates. Tracking currency movements via offshore banks offering accounts in US dollars, sterling and Euros with the option of switching currencies may seem to be the upcoming way to...
25 Feb at 6 PM

Thousands of Brit victims hit by holiday home scam

Around 3,000 British investors are faced with financial disaster after pension advisors recommended the off-plan purchase of Caribbean villas. Essex-based Harlequin Properties promised would-be expats and investors a luxury life in one of 6,000 upscale villas to be built on Barbados and other Caribbean paradise islands. At the present...
25 Feb at 6 PM

British couple face deportation for living in wrong Oz suburb

A British couple is threatened with deportation from Australia due to their mistakenly buying a home three miles from their allocated location. Former Dundee residents George and Lana Breen were granted a visa stating they must live in a specified regional area of Brisbane rather than in the city itself. The visa had been granted as part...
22 Feb at 6 PM

France still a favourite with Britons looking for life quality

In spite of the continuing Eurozone crisis and the French government’s recent imposition of tax hikes on property, France is still the dream destination for thousands of would-be migrants. Quality of life is the number one reason for most people planning the move of a lifetime, with visions of quaint villages with traditional markets,...
22 Feb at 6 PM

U turn on inheritance tax may affect British expats

With the UK inheritance tax level now frozen and £325,000 until 2019 in order to fund social care reform, expats believing they are exempt need to check the small print. In spite of a pre-election pledge by the Conservative Party that inheritance tax levels would be raised to £1 million, the limit after which the tax will become due is...
21 Feb at 6 PM

Female entrepreneur to miss out on New Zealand residency visa

A Chinese entrepreneur who set up a successful business employing three people after her arrival in New Zealand has been refused a permanent residency visa on financial grounds. Businesswoman Lanfang Zhang had applied for her conditional residency through NZ immigration’s Entrepreneur Plus programme, which requires an investment of...
21 Feb at 6 PM

Over half of US citizens support deportation for illegal immigrants

According to a recent poll, a majority of US citizens support deportation for all illegal immigrants. The Reuters/Ipsos poll, released earlier this week, highlights the problems faced by the US government as it attempts to reform its immigration laws. The poll revealed that a majority of Americans are in favour of deportation for the...
21 Feb at 6 PM

Expat private health insurance overburdened with red tape

Expats taking up jobs overseas and including the purchase of international private health insurance in their plans are being increasingly burdened with red tape and confusing choices. One of the least-understood and most important issues is the policy itself, especially for expats heading for Abu Dhabi, China and Russia. Is your chosen...
21 Feb at 6 PM

Spanish property scandal couple who lost home win compensation

As the Spanish homes scandal rumbles on, it’s better news for at least one couple, who have been awarded compensation for the loss of their bulldozed home. Len and Helen Prior witnessed their £350,000 villa in Andalusia being bulldozed by the regional government due to ‘planning irregularities’, even although they had all the...
19 Feb at 6 PM

Singaporean protestors voice concerns over increased immigration plans

A huge protest at Singapore’s Speaker’s Corner in Hong Lim Park signalled Singaporeans’ unrest at the government’s plan to raise population numbers by encouraging immigration. Earlier this month, Singapore’s government lawmakers endorsed a study which suggested the solution to the declining workforce was to increase immigration....
19 Feb at 6 PM

Fears rise over possible downturn in Australian property market

Figures recently released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics are stoking fears that the country’s property boom in on its way to a bust. Working on the premise that real estate developers know exactly when to pull in their financial horns, speculators are nervous due to the noticeable fall in the value of building approvals over the...
18 Feb at 6 PM

Delays over expected UAE expat business ownership ruling disappoints

Following the UAE’s Federal National Council (FNC) decision last Wednesday to reject the new draft of its companies laws, lawyers are voicing their concern. Members of the advisory body decided that the long-awaited change in law to allow expats to own a majority of a foreign company operating in the UAE should now be part of the new...
18 Feb at 6 PM

Australian immigration warns student visa holders of scam

Australia’s Department of Immigration and Citizenship has recently issued scam warnings to international students on student visas. The scammers are hitting on overseas students in the country whose student visas allow them to work for a limited number of days in every month. Individuals posing as immigration officials are approaching...
16 Feb at 6 PM

Canadian immigration trends benefit skilled workers, entrepreneurs and investors

Noticeable trends in Canada’s immigration rulings over the past decade have shown a more favourable attitude towards workers with specific skills, investors and entrepreneurs. Historically, Canadian immigration laws have favoured workers eager to take on jobs in which Canadian nationals have little interest. The majority of those granted...
16 Feb at 6 PM

American expats could get tax rebates on overseas earnings

Experts in US tax matters believe that, in certain cases, filing a US tax return may result in a rebate on expats’ overseas earnings. Most Americans living abroad resent having to pay tax to the US government on their overseas earnings, but tax experts are now suggesting that filing a US tax return might be a good idea. The USA is the...
14 Feb at 6 PM

Extreme sports expats caught by health insurance small print

Expat adrenaline junkies who spend their weekends indulging in extreme sports activities are being advised to read the small print on their medical insurance policies. A recent survey revealed that half of the expats who took part were keen on extreme sports such as rock-climbing, whitewater rafting, kitesurfing, quad biking, hang gliding,...
14 Feb at 6 PM

Brit and Singaporean trapped in Thai court case can leave

Two businessmen trapped in Thailand for three years due to a vindictive ex-landlord can now leave the country. Lee Chestnutt and his Singaporean partner Jaffrey Maharan had brought their furniture export business to Thailand and rented accommodation large enough to store purchased stock until it could be exported to clients. At first,...
13 Feb at 6 PM

Longterm residency a bonus for Middle East property buyers

The number of expats buying property in the expat hubs of the Middle East is rising fast due to real estate ownership being considered a qualifying factor for long-term residency. Dubai and Abu Dhabi property markets are seeing a return to the good old days, with revenue from property sales topping £1.7 billion in 2012. Dubai is the...
13 Feb at 6 PM

NZ immigration adds digital spatial expertise to skills list

After approaches to New Zealand’s immigration authorities by concerned companies, the description ‘other spatial scientist’ has been added to the skill shortage listings. For would-be migrants slightly confused by the Kiwi description of the skill, the basics for qualification under the new classification are a bachelor’s degree in...
12 Feb at 6 PM

Saudi women may be able to sponsor expat husbands

A new Saudi directive is now being implemented in an attempt to provide security and family stability to Saudi women married to expats and any sons of the marriage. The directive states that the sons of mixed marriages between Saudi women and expats may be brought into the country under the sponsorship of their mothers. According to...
12 Feb at 6 PM

Illegal Canada job offer business booming in UAE immigration consultancies

Some immigration consultants in the United Arab Emirates are now offering high-priced Canadian job offer services although they are not licensed to do so. Most immigrant visas for Canada now require job offers from Canadian companies in specific skilled and semi-skilled fields listed by the Canadian immigration office.It’s well known...
11 Feb at 6 PM

FATCA pushes Caymans to make financial registers public

Authorities in the offshore financial tax haven of the Cayman Islands are being forced by the USA’s FATCA to withdraw the veil of secrecy over the financial doings of the extremely wealthy. The government fears its laws guaranteeing financial secrecy to investors are hurting the Caymans’ image and leaving it open to accusations of...
11 Feb at 6 PM

Chile slashes cash requirements for business startups to zero

Chile will soon be the easiest expat destination in which to start a business, due to new laws being passed to encourage incoming entrepreneurs and business people. At the present time, forming a Chilean company takes only a few weeks and costs around $600 on a do-it-yourself basis. The new law simplifies the procedure still more, and will...
8 Feb at 6 PM

Fake NZ immigration advisor found guilty and sentenced

After a lengthy investigation resulted in her arrest for supplying false information, deception and fraud, Uluata Ekuale was found guilty on all counts. Ekuale had posed as an immigration advisor and promised visas and jobs in exchange for cash payments as well as supplying immigration officials with false information and giving unlicensed...
8 Feb at 6 PM

UK Foreign Office warns expats in Somalia of specific threats

The UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office is now advising British expats living or working in Somalia to leave the country due to specific threats of violence against non-nationals. In their statement the FCO said that there is now a specific threat against Westerners in the East African nation, urging British citizens who are still there to...
7 Feb at 6 PM

United Arab Emirates bank launches expat pension plan

Expat staff in the UAE may well benefit from the first ever savings and pension plan specifically aimed at multinational and domestic employers of overseas workers. The National Bank of Abu Dhabi (NBAD) has launched its innovative Wealth Builder Plan, aimed at UAE corporate employers who wish to offer their expatriate workers enhanced...
7 Feb at 6 PM

Migrants group demands inheritance tax exemption for disenfranchised expats

The British Community Committee of France (BCCF) is demanding that the liability of inheritance tax be cancelled after 15 years’ expat absence from the UK. UK expats who move overseas on a permanent basis are denied the right to vote after 15 years’ residence abroad, with the move by France’s largest expat group being seen as an...
6 Feb at 6 PM

Expat savers still suffering from UK government policies

Five years after the start of the world financial crisis, expat savers with offshore accounts are still suffering low interest rates due to government strategies to give banks cheap money. Unless a miracle occurs, next month expat savers will have seen the real value of their savings fall for five years in succession due to the base...
6 Feb at 6 PM

New Zealand accuses OZ of unfair Kiwi migrants visa rules

Kiwi PM John Key recently accused Australia’s immigration department of applying discrimination against migrants from New Zealand in the matter of citizenship applications. Key claims that the Oz immigration system prevents long-term Kiwi residents in Australia from becoming citizens and being granted the right to vote and claim social...
5 Feb at 6 PM

Singapore plans for population growth include more expats

The government of the crowded conurbation of Singapore is aiming to increase its population by 30 per cent over the next 17 years, with the bulk of the increase expected to be expats. The city state is already home to a high percentage of arrivals from overseas, with expats making up 38 per cent of its population. Tensions are already...
5 Feb at 4 PM

Asian casinos welcome expat gamblers with open arms

In spite of the rising trend towards increased anti-foreigner legislation across Asia, one business sector on the continent is making it easier than ever for expat gamblers. Asia’s many casinos welcome expats with open arms, although in many Asian countries gambling by nationals is illegal. A boom is expected as more Westerners flock to...
4 Feb at 6 PM

Expats follow firms away from overpriced central Hong Kong

Expats living and renting in Hong Kong are expected to follow businesses deserting the expensive central district for more economical suburban office rentals and accommodation. The move by foreign and locally-owned businesses away from the high-rental value central district has accelerated over the past year as corporations continue to...
4 Feb at 6 PM

Diplomatic row over UK plan to discourage Bulgarian immigrants

Following the UK government’s proposed plan to rubbish Britain as a migrant destination in Bulgaria and Romania, a diplomatic row has broken out. After the ban on Bulgarian and Romanian job-seekers in the UK ends in January 2015, when both countries become full EU members, migrants are expected to flood into the UK. The government’s...
1 Feb at 6 PM

Manila condo demand soars as foreign investors discover Philippines

The expanding expat community in Manila and other popular Philippine immigrant destinations has lead to a boom in real estate and the construction of huge numbers of condo blocks. In Manila, the call for expat-style condo blocks is transforming the city’s skyline, with property investors jumping on the bandwagon and a surge in foreign...
1 Feb at 6 PM

Popular business link expat forum swamped by offshore FAs

A successful social networking group aimed at expat Brits worldwide has been forced to create a financial services sub-group after it was taken over by offshore financial advisors. The LinkedIn forum was a popular place for expat business people to exchange views and network for over five years until it was overwhelmed by offshore-based...
29 Feb at 6 PM

Canada tops index of British expat lifestyle quality

As reported by Reuters, Canada’s beautiful landscapes, diverse society, security and health care services put it number one on the globe for UK expats, reveals a yearly index on published on Wednesday. The NatWest International Personal Banking Quality of Life Index reported that in spite of a global economic crisis, over two-thirds of...
28 Feb at 6 PM

80k construction jobs in Canada could go to Irish

As reported by the Irish Times, nearly 80,000 positions in the Canadian building industry could go to Irish construction workers, says a delegation from British Columbia visiting Ireland this week. Manley MacLachlan, who heads the British Columbia Construction Association, an association representing nearly 2,000 companies, announced there...
27 Feb at 6 PM

Financial hardship hitting British expats in Spain

As reported by The Telegraph, a television documentary has exposed the extent to which British expatriates in Spain are toiling during the eurozone crisis, as social services and charities are overwhelmed with the demand for aid. The BBC’s Andrew Sinclair, correspondent for East Anglia, interviewed expats living in Spain and discovered...
27 Feb at 9 AM

Expats fight to save Albox homes in Spain

A British couple have vowed to continue fighting, despite having lost their appeal against their Spanish home being demolished. The house in Albox, Andalucía, is amongst of a group that were served with demolition orders earlier this year. The couple, who wish to remain anonymous for now, built the house in 2002 and believed they had...
24 Feb at 9 AM

Scottish expats keep eyes on UAE developments

As reported by Gulf News, Despite Scottish expatriates residing in the UAE are closely watching the political developments in their motherland amid tense debate about a referendum on a complete independence from the UK. Around 20,000 Scots have exchanged Caledonia’s lush and green pastures for the Emirates’ sun and sand, primarily Abu...
22 Feb at 12 PM

Irish labourers in Western Australia may see 3 year passport ban

As reported by Inside Ireland, due to sham employers, many Irish labourers in Western Australia may have received false migration advice, which may trigger a passport ban lasting up to three years. Western Australia’s Department of Immigration and Citizenship is reportedly investigating allegations into a construction company providing...
21 Feb at 4 PM

Expats in Australia cautioned over card fraud

As reported in The Telegraph, Australia is one of the trendiest destinations for migrating Britons, with over 100,000 relocating there between 2005 - 2010. While most Brits living abroad open bank accounts in their new Australian home, a 2010 survey revealed that over half of those immigrants who moved over five years ago had retained a...
20 Feb at 3 PM

British expat rescue plan in case Greece leaves Euro

As reported by Express, the United Kingdom has designed contingency plans to aid British expats stranded in Greece if the country leaves the euro. Alistair Burt, the UK’s Foreign Office Minister, announced the Government’s plans to rescue Britons should they be stranded without cash by a sudden Greek exit. Mr Burt advised expats...
17 Feb at 3 PM

British embassy clarifies Bahrain’s new visa policy

As reported by Trade Arabia, UK citizens in Bahrain have received reassurance from the British Embassy about the country’s new immigration policies that will soon reverse their ability to obtain visas upon arrival. The Embassy stated that the proposed changes to acquire Bahraini visas were still in their early stages, explaining that...
17 Feb at 9 AM

Australian immigration hosts information sessions about skilled migration

As reported by Work Permit, Australia's Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) is sending immigration officials to visit the South Australia and New South Wales regions, beginning 20 February 2012, in order to offer businesses and foreign workers more information on employer-sponsored visa programmes and skilled...
15 Feb at 6 PM

Bahrain’s expats criticise new visa rules

As reported in Trade Arabia, expatriates living in Bahrain have slammed new immigration laws which would end visa-upon-arrival privileges for people from dozens of nations. The reforms are being introduced in a bid to stop violations and guarantee equal treatment with nations that enforce stringent entry laws on Bahrainis, explained Shaikh...
14 Feb at 6 PM

US anti-immigrant group against Irish visa bill

As reported by Irish Central, Numbers USA, the American anti-immigrant group, has organised to block the Irish E3 visa legislation from passing at the senate. The group sent emails to over one million members last Thursday targeting the visa bill. Their activities occurred after both the Boston Herald and the Boston Globe announced that...
13 Feb at 3 PM

Desperate Britons turn to the US dollar

As reported by The Telegraph, Lloyds TSB International has announced a marked rise in savers requesting dollar-denominated accounts. It has now almost doubled the rate it awards on one-year fixed-rate US dollar accounts—increasing from 1.5pc to 2.8pc. Nicholas Boys Smith at Lloyds TSB International says that many wealthy investors...
10 Feb at 6 PM

Union says fire crews relocating abroad due to cuts

As reported by Herald, many of Ireland’s firefighters are moving overseas as pay and job prospects continue to get worse. About a dozen fire service personnel are believed to be hunting for work in Dubai, Canada, Australia and other countries, says a spokesperson for the Irish Fire and Emergency Services Association (IFESA). John Kidd...
9 Feb at 6 PM

Dangerous prescription-only meds sold over the counter in Spain

As reported by the Olive Press, an anti-smoking medication linked to a heightened risk of suicide is still being sold over the counter in Andalucia, Spain. The drug Champix is reportedly widely available at pharmacies even though the manufacturer has insisted it is ‘prescription-only’. One UK expatriate Karen Cox, 46, has called for...
8 Feb at 6 PM

Irish export gains mask unemployment

As reported by Bloomberg, although signs are showing that the Irish economy is starting to recover after its financial bailout 15 months ago, its leaders say the economy is still suffering the worst crisis since the Second World War. The nation’s unemployment figures, standing at 14.2% in January, has nearly reached its highest level...
7 Feb at 6 PM

Guardian Wealth urges expats to review finances

As reported by FT Advisor, Guardian Wealth chief executive David Howell has announced that pensions, savings, tax planning and health insurance are areas expatriates should consider. The CEO urged expats to figure out how to handle financial affairs in the midst of a volatile international market. He said it was critical that expatriates...
6 Feb at 6 PM

Swinney defends referendum EU voters

Finance Secretary John Swinney has backed plans to allow EU nationals residing in Scotland to vote in the country’s independence referendum, reports the BBC. Mr Swinney revealed the same rules that applied to the previous Scottish Parliament election were set to be used. This would mean that roughly 60,000 EU nationals currently living...
3 Feb at 2 PM

More Indian students in New Zealand

India sends the most students and the second most skilled migrants to New Zealand, reveals a report by the Department of Labour. In 2011, 13 per cent of skilled migrants entering New Zealand were Indian, which is an increase from the 8 per cent in 2010, reports the NZ Herald. The report states that despite the global slowdown in...
2 Feb at 6 PM

Immigrant adoption changes in UAE

New regulations will make it less complicated for UAE citizens to provide a child with a home, but immigrants seeking to adopt will still be obliged to do so from abroad. The National reports that the new law, passed last month by the FNC, are making their way through the legislative process. The regulations will preserve the rights of...
1 Feb at 6 PM

Emigrating with a partner is harder than doing it alone.

Couples moving to New Zealand often have an unequal desire to emigrate, reveals a recent study be the Victoria University of Wellington. Researcher Aidan Tabor from the University’s Centre for Applied Cross-Cultural Research interviewed 95 UK residents who were about to emigrate to New Zealand, reports the website Scoop. The findings...