India is not an easy place to live, I don’t think anybody disagrees with that (or do you?), especially for people who relocate from western countries.
When I see a westerner walking on the road, this thought always passes by my mind – “How different (aka difficult) it must be for these guys to live in this part of the world”. I never thought about it earlier but after living in US for a few years, I can surely imagine the plight of foreigners when they first land in India.
Mind you, I am not criticizing India in any way, I prefer living in India any day and hence I came back for good. But at the same time – for these people, it is a completely different life and it surely takes a lot of adjustment to settle down.
A recent survey released by Brookfield Global relocation services company points that India is the 2nd most difficult country to relocate after China.
Here are some of the Interesting findings of the survey:
Most Challenging Destinations for Expatriates
Among all the respondents of the survey, China was cited by 16% of respondents, followed by India (14%), and Russia (7%).
China and India always have been among the top seven destinations presenting the greatest assignment challenges. With one exception (when it was ranked in second place), China has always been cited as the most challenging destination for expatriates.
Here are some of the verbatim comments by the respondents of the survey on why India is such a challenging country:
tax…living conditions…lifestyle, cultural (work and personal), family settling in…cultural differences, complexity of move…cultural…costs, reliable DSPs [destination service providers]…housing and cultural…assignment policies are difficult to structure to be both attractive to an assignee and compliant with external and internal requirements…cultural differences, Indian regulations…availability of appropriate schooling…various regulations and requirements, hardship location…changes in immigration laws and sales tax collection (TDS [tax deducted at source])…visas, accommodation, transport…unrealistic expectations…standard new location challenges (understanding the tax system, familiarization with new processes, etc.)…security, developing country…constant change…changing legislation and little/lack of communication…cultural issues…introduction of mandatory provident fund contributions…security concerns, living conditions, cultural differences…hardship location…assignee expectations…
From comments you can know that most of the challenges refer to cultural as well Tax & Legal implications.
You can get full report here