The US topped the list followed by the UK and Australia where the professionals were looking to work overseas, according to the survey of professionals carried out by the global recruitment firm Hydrogen Group.
Singapore ranked seventh in the global list and topped as the Asian destination. Hong Kong was second and third in the Asian list and 11th and 12th in the global ranking.
The UAE was in 8th global position followed by France and Spain at 9th and 10th position respectively. Norway, Belgium and the Netherlands were at 13th, 14th and 15th position respectively.
The results were based on an online survey done last November, covering 2,444 responses from professionals in 99 different countries.
The report also highlighted a segment of respondents who categorised themselves as “return homers”.
About 27 per cent of professionals said they had returned home from an international work stint, and 71 per cent of these were aged between 30 and 60 years.
This demography is of increasing importance to a number of Asian states, including Singapore, as they see this group of professionals as means to help develop local economies as well as alleviate the reliance on expatriates, it said.
The countries are trying to bring back the group of workers home through various means, it added.
“We now have a worldwide talent pool to draw candidates from. The return homers are of particular interest in Asia, where countries are legislating to ensure their local talent is developed, retained and attracted back,” said Simon Walker, Asia-Pacific Chief Operating Officer at Hydrogen Group.
However, while these “return homers” are highly coveted, it appears they are also highly mobile.
About 96 per cent of this demographic said they were willing to work abroad again and many of them were willing to work in the emerging economies of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa as these markets face talent shortages.