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Nine in ten expats 'think a country's culture affects them professionally'

Almost 90 per cent of expatriate workers in the Middle East think the social norms of a country have an impact on their working life, says new research.

Conducted by Dubai-based recruitment firm Bayt.com, the study revealed 88 per cent of the 14,844 expats surveyed needed time to acclimatise to a new country.

The poll found that workers have varied experiences of working overseas. Just over one-third (34 per cent) said they felt cultural differences unavoidably affected life in and out of work, while a further 34 per cent said although their lifestyle had changed, their productivity had not.

Commenting on the findings, Amer Zureikat, Bayt.com’s regional manager, said the results "demonstrate that professionals moving to new countries for the purpose of employment expect new cultural norms to influence their lives – at home, at work, or both".

Last week saw reports suggesting the recession has had a significant impact on migration patterns around the world.

Commissioned by the BBC World Service and conducted by independent research agency the Migration Policy Institute, the study found a trend for workers staying put during the downturn.

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