CHINESE granted the right of abode in Western countries after the June 4 Tiananmen Square massacre have become a valuable source of managers for multinational corporations tapping the China market, says an executive search firm. ''There are about 70,000 Chinese nationals with [US] green cards who are becoming a new breed of managers in China,'' said Andrew Tsui, managing director of recruitment company Russell Reynolds Associates. Most of them were highly educated, had strong connections, and were well-equipped in skills and expertise from top British and European universities and were head-hunted for multinationals or financial institutions eager to gain a foothold, or expand, in China. Their experience in US multinationals, Wall Street and the industrial belt in Chicago gave them a good grasp of Western corporate culture, which was another strong asset. Mr Tsui said the Chinese nationals - who received their first degrees in China and advanced degrees in the US, Britain or other European countries - were often willing to return to China to work. ''We have been able to bring many of these so-called 'long-lost sons of China' back to the fold,'' he said. ''These people are armed with Western management theories and skills, and are eager to participate in the rapidly developing economy of China.'' He said last year alone, the Hong Kong firm did 130 assignments, of which half were for China-related jobs. Mr Tsui said most of the targets were students who had been studying in the US and were given right of abode after Tiananmen Square. Having an understanding of the East and West, they became a valuable source of management talent. His firm had helped to place many in investment banking, project financing, securities, consumer products, food and beverages, and industrial products sectors in Hong Kong and China, with some becoming full or assistant department heads. Remuneration packages for their transfer back to Asia varied, with some returning on full expatriate terms, which meant an annual package of US$200,000 to $300,000 a year. Others received smaller packages but still considerably more than Chinese were paid. Mr Tsui added that although many had generally been away from China for some time, they had little difficulty adapting to the life on the mainland or in Hong Kong. However, he said there were instances where their transfers had led to resentment among the mainland staff, who wondered whether the managers were worth what they were paid. He said as more Chinese nationals went abroad to study and work, the supply of well-trained Chinese managers would increase. ''These people are very much in demand, but there will come a point in time when the question of how they should be remunerated will be raised,'' said Mr Tsui. ''It is like the question of a Hong Kong person who acquires a Canadian passport and comes back to Hong Kong to work. How do you treat him - as an expatriate or a local?'' Mr Tsui said the definition was important, because that would raise the question of tax equalisation, where the company would pick up the tax liability of a manager whose tax had gone up as a result of a relocation. But as the supply of Chinese managers increased, the difference between this category of Chinese managers and mainland managers would narrow. ''Corporations nowadays are looking for ways to cut cost and to access the market better. ''This points to developing the locals in a succession plan in a five-year time-frame and spending more time on developing and training the bright local staff ,'' he said. He added that the high cost of hiring expatriates would eventually have a direct impact on profits.