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Rising costs have not stopped an increasing number of American firms from sending employees abroad to ply their trades. Of the 171 companies responding to the survey conducted by the employee benefits consulting firm Foster Higgins, 64% reported that in the past two years they had increased the number of employees on international assignments.
Companies spend approximately two-and-a-half times as much on expatriate employees as they would to hire a citizen of the host country. Bestowed on mostly mid- to high-level executives, these assignments are projected to continue as companies become more globalized.