The Wall Street Journal has a lengthy article reporting that some expat or overseas Filipinos are starting to reverse the decades long brain drain by returning home to work or start businesses. According to the government’s Commission on Filipinos Overseas (FCO), more than 10.4 million Filipinos were living abroad in 2011 for a nearly 50% jump from 2005; but the number has now gradually begun to fall with President Benigno Aquino III recently saying it may be as low as 9.4 million now as the Philippines’ economy continues to grow.
However, there is no data on how many white-collar Filipino expats have returned home for job opportunities or to start businesses. Nearly half of the Filipinos abroad are thought to have settled overseas permanently.
In addition, thousands of Filipinos are still leave the country every day. In 2014, nearly half a million went abroad to take contract work, according to the Philippine Overseas Employment Agency (POEA). Nearly a million more renewed existing contracts. Those figures also don’t count those who go abroad outside the agency’s auspices.
The Wall Street Journal was accompanied by this video about the Philippines brain drain: