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US named most popular foreign work destination

English-speaking nations are the most appealing foreign destinations in which to work, with the U.S. taking the top spot, according to a new survey.

Nearly two out of three respondents said they would be willing to move abroad for work, in an online poll of 200,000 jobseekers and employees across 189 countries.

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The Brooklyn Bridge and the skyline of lower Manhattan, New York.
Ryan D. Budhu | Getty Images
The Brooklyn Bridge and the skyline of lower Manhattan, New York.

The U.S. was named the most appealing foreign place to work by 42 percent of those surveyed, in a study carried out by management consultancy firm The Boston Consulting Group (BCG) and recruitment group The Network.

The U.K. and Canada were the next most popular destinations, gaining 37 percent and 35 percent of the vote, respectively.

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BCG said the numbers of workers open to moving abroad for work was "startlingly high" and was indicative of the "evolving market place for talent".

"It's a world in which the geographic barriers to employment are coming down, including in the minds of some of the most talented and highly educated workers," said BCG senior partner and report co-author Rainer Strack in the report.

"This is opening up significant opportunities for individuals and for the many countries and multinational companies that are facing talent shortages of one sort or another," he said.

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Respondents in the Netherlands, Australia and Switzerland were particularly willing to move to a different country for work, with 90 percent of Dutch workers open to moving abroad, followed by 80 percent of Australians polled and 75 percent of Swiss workers.

"There's always an implicit calculation of what the job will allow them to do in their off-time," said managing director of The Network and co-author Mike Booker. "The difference in the more mobile work environment of today is that workers are applying that filter to job possibilities outside their home countries."