The answer to whether global opportunities for Telugus are real or are simply a hype, lies in the facts.
According to Wikipedia, as at 2017, there are 415,414 Telugus in the US, 337,000 in Saudi Arabia, 139,000 in Myanmar, 130,400 in Europe, 118,000 in Malaysia, 34,435 in Australia, 33,000 in Fiji, 19,000 in Mauritius, 15,655 in Canada, 4,600 in South Africa and 400 in Singapore. While the Telugu population in Myanmar, Malaysia, Fiji, Mauritius, South Africa and Singapore are mainly the 3rd or 4th generation of Telugus who migrated in the late 19th century or early 20th century, the Telugus in the US, Saudi, Europe and Australia have migrated to these destinations in the course of the last 20 years for opportunities in fields relating to IT, engineering, construction and service sectors.
Global employment opportunities for Telugus therefore is far from a myth, it is a reality for many, especially those with qualifications in STEM subjects – science, technology, engineering and mathematics. STEM jobs pay on average higher than non-STEM subjects and job prospects are abundant as the rise of the digital age demands skills in IT and engineering on a mass scale. According to the Center for Immigration Studies, US*, native Telugu speakers in the US increased by 86% between 2010-2017, marking the largest increase in a foreign language speaking group. Although this takes into account the Telugu student population, it indicates the significant growth in foreign employment opportunities for Telugus.
Employment opportunities are also higher for Telugus with higher English proficiency especially in higher paying corporate and IT positions. Those graduating from recognized top-notch universities in their home countries also stand higher chances of being offered placements in global companies. The same goes for those with specific professional qualifications and experience, for example in technical areas such as AWS cloud services, Cisco networking and Oracle web services.
For sectors such as manufacturing and transportation where Telugus are also hired in large numbers in countries such as the UAE, qualification requirements are based on one’s willingness to relocate and work in more labour intensive sectors.
Apart from employment opportunities, business opportunities are also abundant especially in destination countries such as the UAE and the US. Indians in general have established successful businesses – from digital start-ups to national franchises in these locations. This presents opportunities for Telugus who are more entrepreneurial in nature to seek out opportunities to create and deliver innovative services required by the consumers not only in these markets, but also customer around the world. The rise of cloud platforms, e-commerce and real-time communications over the web will see more opportunities opening up for Telugus who have the right skills and acumen to capitalize on the access to a global marketplace. Over coming years and decades, such opportunities will increase and regardless of where we are based, we are well positioned to tap into global opportunities.