Hong Kong's and Singapore's financial services industries are getting stricter with Mandarin speaking requirements for British expatriates.
In a study by UK-based headhunter Astbury Marsden, British bankers with no Mandarin speaking background may have a hard time landing an Asian contract, particularly as the majority of the demand for financial services in the region is composed of wealthy mainland Chinese clients.
Competition for top financial positions in both Hong Kong and Singapore is tough, giving non-Mandarin speakers very little to no edge at all when it comes to employment.
"Having the technical skills and experience is no longer enough. If your role in a bank or fund manager is to deal with a mainland Chinese client, you are now expected to be fluent in Mandarin," said Mark O'Reilly, managing director of Astbury Marsden Asia-Pacific.