This may be a new concept to some but is not new in reality. A good example is the USA and Australia where the migrants became so extensive and a majority over the local population that they became the dominant political force of their country of adoption. It could be easier for it to happen in Australia, and New Zealand for that matter, as the local populations were small. For it to happen in the USA required extraordinary circumstances like mass and uncontrolled new migrants and a reversed process like genocide of the local population.
Reverse emigration is very easily effected in a small island and small population like ours. We could actually be near the tipping point where foreigners are more than the locals. It could already have been if PRs are recognized as foreigners, plus all the temporary stayers.
What would happen are the effects of life on the locals when the locals become a minority in their own country. We are not feeling the pressure yet as the language of English is still widely used officially and informally. When foreign languages become the lingua franca, when signboards are changed, when lifestyle and social habits are changed, when foreigners are imposing their rights over the locals, the impact would be more felt and immediate.
Would there be a day where there are more foreigners in a train or bus than locals? Would there be a day when the HR depts are dominated by foreigners who choose to hire foreigners and discriminate against the locals? Would there be a day when foreigners dominate the civil service and govt and policies are more favourable to foreigners? Would there be a day when foreigners are given free scholarship to study in our universities and locals would have to beg, borrow or steal to do that?
Would there be a day when foreigners would freely cut queues for services in retail outlets or public services because the providers of services were foreigners and not locals? Would there be a day where the landlords are foreigners and the tenants are locals? Would there be a day when signs are put up saying no Singaporeans and dogs are allowed?
Reverse emigration can become an ugly reality if we are not careful. Or are we there already? Without thinking, having more foreigners here seems so fun and so good for the economy. The world seems to be able to live with the reverse emigration in the USA, Australia and New Zealand. Some of the uncaring elite also share the view that it is better as the new migrants are much more talented and have led these countries to greater heights and better quality of life and development. Sounds very familiar to our meritocracy when talents are welcome and non talent locals are encouraged to go to Bintan, Batam and JB.
When would the seriousness of reverse emigration really hit the daft Sinkies for them to feel the pain? Unfortunately the day they felt it, it would be too late. When that day comes, Sinkies will find themselves in another country without physically migrating or moving. The foreigners moved in and became the majority. The complacent Sinkies got emigrated by staying put.