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Overseas Chinese

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INTRODUCTION: Defining overseas Chinese 4

UNDERSTANDING OVERSEAS CHINESE A. History and cultural background 1. Southeast Asia 2. North America 3. Europe 4. Chinatowns B. The reasons for immigrating abroad 1. Political reasons 2. Economic and social reasons C. Current status 1. Population distribution 2. Southeast Asia a. The overseas Chinese’s paradox b. The Indonesian case 3. The United States 4. Europe

BUSINESS WORLD OF CHINESE A. Rise of Global Chinese Companies & Huaqiao B. Regional Analysis 1. Asia 2. The United States 3. Europe C. Size of Chinese Capital Worldwide

SUCCESS OF OVERSEAS CHINESE A. The Business Style B. The Downside of their Business Style

THE CHANGES IN THE OVERSEAS CHINSESE SOCIETY A. Old and New Generation: How are they Different? B. The New Business of the New Generation C. The New Trend in the Chinese Immigration

CONCLUSION A. Future Outlook of the Hua Qiao B. The opportunity to work with Overseas Chinese: WCEC 2005 in Seoul

Defining overseas Chinese

Overseas Chinese are ethnic Chinese people who live outside of China. China, in this usage, may refer to Greater China including territory currently administered by the rival governments of the People's Republic of China and the Republic of China as per traditional definitions of the term prior to the Chinese civil war, or only to the People's Republic of China by some quarters. In addition, the government of the Republic of China granted residents of Hong Kong and Macau "overseas Chinese status" prior to their respective handover to Beijing rule, so the definition may be said to loosely extend to them. In terms of terminology1, strictly speaking, there are two words in Chinese for overseas Chinese: huáqiáo (华侨 / 華僑) refers to overseas Chinese who were born in China, while huáyì (华裔 / 華裔) refers to any overseas Chinese with a Chinese ancestry. It has to be noted that the usage of the term can be relatively fluid geographically. For example, the ethnic Chinese people of Singapore and Malaysia are occasionally excluded from the above said definition of "overseas Chinese" in view of their close cultural and social affinity with China, despite the geographical divide of the said societies. This view is very rare, however.

In this research, we chose the traditional definition of overseas Chinese, that is to say ethnic Chinese people who live strictly outside of China, and including Hong-Kong and Taïwan.

First of all we will try to understand more overseas Chinese, their history and current status in Asia, America and Europe. Then we will deal with the characteristics of th business world of the Chinese, and focuss on the reasons for their success. Finally we will see the changes of the overseas chinese societies and a future outlook.


The Encyclopedia of the Chinese Overseas, Chinese Heritage center, Harvard University Press, 1999 4


A. Histor y and cultural backgr ound

Emigration from China to other parts of the world really took off in the 1860s with the enactment of the Treaty of Peking, which opened the border for free movement. The early immigrants came primarily from coastal province of Guangdong and Fujian (Fukien) — where Cantonese, Min Nan (Hokkien), Hakka, and Chaozhou (Teochew, Chiu Chow) are largely spoken — in southeastern China. There were three main destinations for them: Southeast Asia, North America and Europe2&3.

1. Southeast Asia
Southeast Asia is the most ancient destination. The overseas populations in those areas arrived between the 16th and the 19th centuries from mostly the maritime provinces of Guangdong and Fujian (the Hoklo ethnic group), followed by Hainan. There are incidence of earlier emigration in the 10th centuries to 15th centuries in particular to Malacca and Southeast Asia. There are approximately 28 million overseas Chinese living in Southeast Asia where they make up a majority of the population of Singapore and significant minority populations in Indonesia, the Philippines, Malaysia. Thailand, Vietnam and

2 3

The Encyclopedia of the Chinese Overseas, Chinese Heritage center, Harvard University Press, 1999 5

2. North America4
According to records from the United States government, the first Chinese arrived in the United States around 1820. Subsequent immigrants that came from the 1820's up to the late 1840's were mainly men, who came in small numbers. However, due to the lack of Chinese women in the United States at that time, many of them intermarried with Americans of European descent. The best known Chinese immigrants that came during this period are the world-famous Siamese twins Chang and Eng Bunker. The major initial wave only started around the 1850s. This was when the West Coast of North America was being rapidly colonized during the California Gold Rush, while southern China suffered from severe political and economic instability due to the weakness of the Qing Dynasty government, internal rebellions such as the Taiping Rebellion, and external pressures such as the Opium Wars. As a result, many Chinese emigrated from the poor Toisanese- and Cantonese-speaking area in Guangdong province to the United States in order to work on the railroads. This immigration (encouraged by the Burlingame Treaty of 1868) was stopped by the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882 which made Chinese immigration illegal until 1943. Many Western states also enacted discriminatory laws which made it difficult for Chinese and Japanese immigrants to own land or even find work. These laws were not overturned until the 1950s, at the dawn of the modern civil rights movement. With the loosening of American immigration laws in 1952 and 19655, a second wave of Chinese immigration began. There was an increase in immigration of professionals from Mainland China, which began to allow for emigration in 1977. This group of Chinese tended to cluster in suburban areas and tended to avoid urban Chinatowns. These Chinese tended to speak fluent Mandarin often in addition to their native dialect. A third wave of recent immigrants consisted of undocumented aliens, chiefly from Fujian province who came to the United States in search of lower-status manual jobs. These aliens tend to concentrate in urban areas such as New York City and there is often very little contact between these Chinese and higher-educated professionals.
4 5

Population density of Asians in the United States as of the 2000 census, National Atlas of the United States The 1965 rules set across-the-board immigration quotas for each country, opening the borders to immigration from Asia for the first 6

time in nearly half a century.

3. Europe As a legacy of European colonialism in Asia, many Asian subjects of British and Continental European empires immigrated to the colonizing country. During the 1950s, immigrants from Hong Kong began migrating to the United Kingdom in large numbers, which resulted in the formation of London's second Chinatown in the Soho district. Some Chinese from the former Portuguese colony of Macau have resettled in Portugal. The same for France from the former French Indochina. After the fall of Saigon at the close of the Vietnam War, the ethnic Chinese boat people from Vietnam were resettled in France and Germany in the late 1970s and 1980s and began settling extensively in Paris's Chinatown and immensely revitalising the area during that time. Paris's Chinatown currently has a vibrant Southeast Asian ethnic Chinese character, while its newer counterpart in the Belleville is largely consists of fairly recent Mainland Chinese. Some Chinese Vietnamese refugees also ended up in Hong Kong, then a British-administered territory. These Vietnamese were resettled in the United Kingdom, and settled in several of its Chinatowns (there are several Vietnamese businesses in London's Chinatown). In 1998, many more Chinese Indonesian immigrants arrived to escape the violent pogroms in Indonesia towards ethnic Chinese (mainly as a result of the Asian financial crisis of 1997).

4. Chinatowns
a. Definition A Chinatown is a section containing a large population of Chinese people within a city that is not predominantly Chinese. Chinatowns are most common in Southeast Asia and North America, but growing Chinatowns can be found in Europe and Australia, as well as in São Paulo, Brazil. In Chinese, Chinatown is usually called in Standard Mandarin Tángrénji (唐人街): "Tang people streets". Chinatowns were formed in the 19th century in many areas of the United States and Canada as a result of discriminatory land laws that forbade the sale of any land to Chinese or restricted the land sales to a limited geographical area and which promoted the segregation of people of different ethnicities. A Chinatown in a particular city may change its location or disappear over time. In the past, overcrowded Chinatowns in urban areas were shunned by the general non-Chinese public as ethnic ghettos, and seen as places of vice and cultural insularism where "unassimilable foreigners" congregated.

Nowadays, many old and new Chinatowns are considered viable centers of commercialism and tourism; some of them also serve, in various degrees, as centers of multiculturalism (espoused in Australia, Canada, and the United Kingdom) and "racial harmony" (especially in Malaysia and Singapore).

b. Features The features described below are characteristic of most Chinatowns. In some cases, however, they may only apply to Chinatowns in Western countries, such as those in North America, Australia, and Western Europe. (See also: Chinatown patterns in North America)  Arches or Paifang: Many tourist-destination metropolitan Chinatowns can be easily distinguished by large red arch entrance structures known in Mandarin Chinese as Paifang (sometimes accompanied by mason lion statues called "foo dogs" on the opposite sides of the street that greet visitors). Historically, these gateways were donated to a particular city as a gift from the Republic of China government and business organizations. Construction of these red arches was also financed by local financial contributions from the Chinatown community. The popular perception of Chinatown often includes these arches.  Bilingual signs: Many major metropolitan areas with Chinatowns have bilingual street signs in Chinese and the language of the adopted country. These signs are generally poorly translated by city planners.  Restaurants: Chinatowns worldwide are usually popular destinations for various ethnic Chinese and increasingly, other Asian cuisines such as Vietnamese, Thai, and Malaysian. Restaurants serve many Chinatowns both as a major economic component and social gathering places. In the Chinatowns in the western countries, restaurant work may be the only type of employment available for poorer immigrants, especially those who cannot converse fluently in the language of the adopted country. Most Chinatowns generally have a range of authentic and touristy restaurants. Some specific restaurants: o Chop suey and chow mein eateries o Cantonese seafood restaurants: they typically use a large dining room layout, have ornate designs, and specialize in seafood such as expensive Chinese-style lobsters, crabs, prawns, clams, and oysters, all kept live in tanks until preparation. These restaurants are also used for weddings, banquets, and other special events. o BBQ delicatessens/restaurants

In integrating with the larger population, Chinese cuisine has evolved. To adapt to local tastes. Besides, Vietnamese immigrants, both ethnic Chinese and non-Chinese, have opened restaurants in many Chinatowns, serving Vietnamese beef noodle soups and Franco-Vietnamese sandwiches.  Shops: Most Chinatown businesses are engaged in the import-export and wholesale businesses; hence a large number of trading companies are found in Chinatowns.  Markets: As with the aforementioned Chinese restaurant trade, grocery stores and seafood markets serve an essential function in typical Chinatown economies, and these stores sell the much-needed ingredients to such restaurants. Chinatown grocers and markets are often characterized by sidewalk vegetable and fruit stalls, a variety of grocery items imported from East and Southeast Asia, fish and other seafood items, which are kept alive and well in aquariums, for Chinese and other Asian cuisine dishes.  Religious and funerary supplies: In keeping with Buddhist and Taoist funeral traditions, Chinese specialty shops also sell incense and a variety of funeral items which provide material comfort in the afterlife of the deceased: specially-crafted replicas of small paper houses, paper radios, paper televisions, paper telephones, paper jewellery; "hell money" currency notes. (intended to be burned in a furnace); red wooden Buddhist altars and small statues for worship.  Video CD stores: Chinatowns also typically contain small businesses that sell imported VCDs and DVDs of Chinese-language films and karaoke. The VCDs are mainly titles of Hong Kong and PRC films, while there are also VCDs of Japanese anime and occasionally pornography. Often, imported bootleg DVDs and VCDs are sold owing to lax enforcement of copyright laws.  Benevolent associations: A major component of many old Chinatowns worldwide is the family benevolent association. These associations generally provide social support, religious services, death benefits (members' names in Chinese are generally enshrined on tablets and posted on walls), meals, and recreational activities for ethnic Chinese, especially for older Chinese migrants.  Annual events in Chinatown: Most Chinatowns the world over present Chinese New Year (or also known as Lunar New Year) festivities with ubiquitous dragon and lion dances accompanied by the clashing of cymbals, by pounding of drums, and by ear-splittingly loud Chinese firecrackers, set off especially in front of ethnic Chinese storefronts, where the "dragon" attempts to reach for a lettuce or catch an orange.



Social problems in Chinatowns

Overcoming an earlier reputation of being dirty slums, Chinatowns currently enjoy the rewards of attracting tourists with Asian cuisine and culture. However the economic success brings with it Asian organized crime with rival gangs competing for new lucrative opportunities in extortion, people smuggling, gambling, prostitution and drug trafficking. This has led to high profile shoot-outs where innocent bystanders and police have been killed. Although some Chinatowns have experienced recent growth and success, many others are facing the difficult challenges of decay and abandonment. This has led some to fear that redevelopment initiatives will erase struggling Chinatowns completely. In 2003, along with these social problems, SARS hit Chinese Canadians' and Chinese Americans' core tourist businesses the hardest, as tourists and local residents became reluctant to risk infection, a fear rooted in racism.

B. The r easons for immigrating abr oad
1. Political reasons
During the nineteenth century, there are three main reasons for flying China6.  Severe political instability under Qing dynasty: A common view of 19th century China is that it was an era in which Qing control weakened and prosperity diminished. Indeed, China suffered massive social strife, economic stagnation, and explosive population growth which placed an increasing strain on the food supply. Historians offer various explanations for these events, but it is generally agreed that Qing power was, over the course of the century, faced with internal problems and foreign pressure which were simply too much for the antiquated Chinese government, bureaucracy, and economy to deal with.  Flight of the Taiping Rebellion: The Taiping Rebellion (1851–1864) was one of the bloodiest conflicts in history, a clash between the forces of Imperial China and those inspired by a Hakka self-proclaimed mystic named Hong Xiuquan, who was also a Christian convert who had claimed that he was the new Messiah and younger brother of Jesus Christ. Most accurate sources put the total deaths at about 20 million civilians and army personnel.  Flight of the Opium wars: There were two so-called Opium Wars between Britain and China. By the


A Brief History of Chinese and Japanese Civilizations, Conrad Shirokauer, Harcourt College Publishers, 1989 10

1830's, the English had become the major drug-trafficking organization in the world; growing opium in India, the East India Company shipped tons of opium into Canton which it traded for Chinese manufactured goods and for tea. This trafficking was a criminal activity after 1836 in order to curb the desastrouus effects of Opium on people, but the British traders generously bribed Canton officials in order to keep the opium traffic flowing. War broke out when Chinese junks attempted to turn back English merchant vessels in November of 1839. it inspired the English to send warships in June of 1840. The Chinese, with old-style weapons and artillery, were no match for the British gunships, and they suffered continual defeats. The Treaty of Nanking in 1842, very unfair to the imperial government, didn’t resolve the conflict. These conflicts came to a head in 1856 in a series of skirmishes that ended in 1860. On the twentieth century, overseas Chinese fled the communist government with their money, know-how, and intellectual opinions. Southeast Asia and the United States were the favourite destinations by facilitating integration into overseas Chinese communities, or by offering political freedom.

2. Economic and social reasons7
Economic and social reasons account for leaving China too. There are two main motivations: to get a higher education in foreign universities, or to get business opportunities. Some examples can be provided:  United Kingdom and France brain drained in their colonies (Hong Kong, Indochine – where there were many overseas Chinese) some brilliant students looking for a higher education and business opportunities.  The United States: o California gold rush and railroads work: Many Chinese emigrated from the poor Toisanese- and Cantonese-speaking area in Guangdong province to the United States in order to work on the railroads. They used to endure in such poor living conditions in their homeland that many were willing to sign up for prepaid long-term labor contracts to work in the US. Many gave the sum of money to their family and didn't expect to be able to return home alive. They considered this act to be akin to selling themselves as pigs. These Chinese clustered in Chinatowns, the largest population was in San Francisco. Some estimated over half of these early immigrants were from Taishan.


The Encyclopedia of the Chinese Overseas, Chinese Heritage center, Harvard University Press, 1999

and 11

o The prosperous years (1950’s, 1960’s) were opportunities for Chinese to do business they couldn’t set up in China because of the communist government. This group of Chinese tended to cluster in suburban areas and tended to avoid urban Chinatowns. These Chinese tended to speak fluent Mandarin often in addition to their native dialect. o Many immigrants from the PRC benefited from the Chinese Student Protection Act of 1992 which granted permanent residency status to immigrants from the PRC. One unintended side effect of the law was that the primary beneficiaries of the law were undocumented Fujianese immigrants, who unlike the Chinese graduate students, would have had no chance to gain permanent residency through normal means.

C. Cur r ent status
Current status of overseas Chinese differs a lot from an area to another, depending on their integration, how they are seen, and how the country creates the conditions of their protection and integration.

1. Population distribution8
Continent/Country Asia Malaysia Singapore Thailand Vietnam Americas Brazil Canada Panama United States Europe Russia France United Kingdom Oceania Australia New Zealand Africa South Africa Total Population 28 000 000 7 000 000 3 400 000 7 300 000 2 300 000 5 020 000 100 000 1 200 000 150 000 2 400 000 1 500 000 680 000 300 000 247 400 569 000 454 000 115 000 126 000 100 000 35 215 000 % of local population 24% 12% 25% 8% 14% 2% 24% 3% 48% 4% 45% 20% 16% 2% 80% 20% 0% 79% % of Overseas Chinese population 80%

8 Library of Ohio University 12

We can notice that southeast Asia welcome the most important overseas Chinese communities, representing around 80% of the overseas Chinese.

2. Southeast Asia
Especially in Southeast Asia, Overseas Chinese are, for most of them, very wealthy by holding important firms and representing more than 50% of the Gross Domestic Product in many countries. However, the wealth of overseas Chinese doesn’t necessarily translate into political power. On the contrary, their social status is very weak.

a. The overseas Chinese’s paradox First, while overseas Chinese may be well endowed financially, their considerable wealth often evokes unwanted attention and jealousy. As it is, overseas Chinese are frequently the target of envy and scorn. Instead of being a boon, wealth paradoxically became the bane of overseas Chinese in their respective countries. Second, economic monopoly does not necessarily create any immunity for overseas Chinese. In many countries they can not expect the protection and backing of the state when the entire nation is in crisis. As a result of pressure by the masses to break the monopoly of the Chinese, attempts may even be made to distribute their wealth forcefully - or, as in the case of Indonesia, permit the mob to lash out at Chinese shops, homes and families. Overseas Chinese are thus made the scapegoat for the corruption and ineptitude of the state. Finally, resulting from the second point, the economic and political history of overseas Chinese has been constantly marked by various attempts, both legal and extrajudicial, to nationalize their wealth. It is for this reason that overseas Chinese tend to hide their wealth abroad, or keep a low profile in their respective countries. The latter does not help their efforts to be identified as a part of the community.

b. The Indonesian case9 Despite having a large share of Indonesia's gross domestic product, estimated by some at 75 percent, the Indonesian citizens of Chinese descent were unable to prevent their ethnic brethren from being killed in the unrest. In spite of their economic contribution to Indonesia for over three decades, the livelihood and basic


“Overseas Chinese: how powerful are they?”, Phar Kim Beng, Asia Times Online, 12.10.2002 13

security of the Indonesian Chinese were totally ignored by the Indonesian army. In other words, not only did the ethnic Chinese fail to capture (or, at least, to influence) the Indonesian state, they were in fact at the mercy of the unruly mob.

3. The United States
Chinese American income and social status vary widely. Although many Chinese Americans in Chinatowns of large cities are poor, others are well-educated upper-class people living in such neighborhoods as Cupertino, Palo Alto, Chino Hills, Diamond Bar, and San Marino. The upper and lower-class Chinese are also widely separated by social status. The lower-class Chinese is often looked down by the upper-class as being uneducated workers who are illegal immigrants. In the San Gabriel Valley, for example, even though the cities of Monterey Park and San Marino are both Chinese American communities lying geographically close to each other, they are separated by a large socio-economic and income gap. In terms of racial discrimination, two incidents have energized some Chinese-Americans and other Asian Americans, particularly American-born Chinese in recent years: the murder of Vincent Chin by white automotive workers in 1982 and the unsubstantiated charges of spying against Chinese American nuclear scientist Wen Ho Lee at Los Alamos National Laboratory in 1999, whom many believe was a victim of racial stereotyping10.

4. Europe
Like in the US, Chinese American income and social status vary widely; many Chinese Americans in Chinatowns of large cities are poor, while well-educated upper-class people living in the centre of cities or nice suburbs. Except for the Chinese living in Chinatowns, there is no specific racial discrimination in Europe11. Overseas Chinese manage to be better integrated than populations from Africa or Middle-East. There are some stigmatizations about the various Chinatowns, but, as they represent a little part of the population and the gross domestic product, they are not considered as a social issue.

10 11

“Asian American Professors Call for Boycott of Energy Department”, 03.23.2000, Asian Week “Le triomphe de la diaspora chinoise”, Hélène Vissière , L’Expansion, 04.28.2004 14

A. Rise of Global Chinese Companies & Huaqiao
From the old days, there’s been lots of old sayings among Huaqio people and one of the most popular sayings is, ; ‘Wherever the sun shines, it reflects the shadow of Chinese people’s footprints’, which means, Chinese people are everywhere in the world if there’s Sun there.12 This is because they are so proud of their Overseas Chinese Network organized by approx. 60million descendents of Chinese people in 168 countries in the world ; not only in mainland China, Taiwan, Hongkong, but in South Asian countries, America, Europe, Australia, and Africa. What is only different from the old days is, they used world-wide people network which is based on credit and banding power to store up capitals but now all the high-tech networking skills instead only to make it rapider.

Lion group, which is the owner of the highest shopping center in Malaysia, has 70% of overseas Chinese employees among 3000 of the whole. And even though the management of the group is settled well and fine with everything, they invested US$ 800 million to mainland china which consists 30% of the whole investment of the group. And according to the CEO, wiliam cheng, the most important managing principle of the Lion group is to maintain good connection with the mainland China. Also, when you put the first step in Jakarta, which is the capital of Indonesia, you can easily hear the saying ; ‘If there was no overseas Chinese in Jakarta, there would be no economy in Jakarta. And it is considered as an old saying lately.

This kind of Chinese-people network has become a considerable power in the world economy. 1,300 million mainland Chinese population is densely connected with overseas-Chinese in all over the world, and thus, even made a economic block. And lately, with young talented generation like Jerry Yang, the founder of Yahoo! Inc., Overseas-Chinese network power is well connected with IT industry which makes it only more powerful.

화상상권엔 해가 지지 않는다., Maeil Economy, 9.25.2005

One good example of how Overseas-Chinese people are willing to be a core power of IT generation is, WCEC(World Chinese Entrepreneurs Convention) which is the biggest web-network connecting 129,000 business people in 120 countries. According to Singapore Overseas-Chinese merchants association, the head of world-wide huaqiao network, ‘if you just click the name of the company, you can find information like address, related products, or even income’. This is mainly made by 4000 huaqiao companies which moved to Singapore 180years ago, including Malaysia, Indonesia, and Thailand, and nearly 30000 people are using it everyday. Also, Taiwanese small companies which are actively using network power as well, sell their products directly to Europe or America using their network.



Hongkong Asian Weekly 2004.10, even though

there’ve been bad facts such as SARS, Iraq war and shrinking of

mainland china economy, total market value of top 500 overseas-Chinese

enterprises have grown up 30% on average within a year. Among these groups, Hutchison Whampoa, which is based in hongkong and owned by Li Ka Xing, took the first place. Hutchison Whampoa is a super sized global company mainly with information telecommunication, shipping and hotel and managed $1,843,000,000 net profit only in this year. And the 2nd and 3rd overseas Chinese enterprises are Xinhongqi and Changcheng, each mainly deal with immovable and transportations in hongkong.

B. Regional Analysis
1. Asia
Among other continents, overseas-Chinese enterprises are doing the best in Asian Countries. And the reasons


화상상권엔 해가 지지 않는다. Maeil Economy, 9.25.2005

vary. First of all, historically Asian countries are the place where most of overseas Chinese merchants have moved in. According to a recent research by Taiwanese government, Chinese immigration to overseas first started in 1800’s and 80% of them moved to other Asian countries. In Asian countries, since it was geographically closer and easy to use their ‘guanxi’ power, which is the most important part in overseas-Chinese business, it was much easier to trade with mainland and thus, easier to succeed. According to Hongkong Asian Weekly, 66% of 10 Asian Countries’ aggregate value of listed stock is by overseas-Chinese merchants placing them as a core power of the region. The types of business in Asian countries are also various. In Hongkong, the main business is service business such as immovable, finance, and physical distribution, while electronics, petrochemical industry are the most successful in Taiwan. Also, in Thailand, most of the overseas-Chinese enterprises are dealing with banking, telecommunications and industry, and banking and immovable are the main in Singapore.

According to Li pe de, researcher

of Asian center in Hongkong university, the overseas-Chinese enterprises are the hidden power of 8~12% high-growth that




and Malaysia managed in last quarter of a year and thus, with the growing mainland Chinese economy, the affect of overseasChinese enterprises will widen in World business world.

2. The United States

Top 500 Huaqiao enterprises grown up 30% for last one year, Chosun, 10.3.2004

The history of Chinese immigrant to the United States started in 19th Century, which makes it also quite long. However, unlike in Asian Countries, overseas-Chinese merchants didn’t manage a considerable success until lately since the racial and cultural problems they faced including language, business skills. For these reasons, the first generation of Chinese immigrants to the United States tends to be limited in Chinatowns and usually engaged in 3D works. They were treated as the cheapest workers for a long time. The new generation, which refers to people born later than 1970’s, however, with no language or cultural problems and higher educational backgrounds, are tending to engaged in high-tech businesses such as IT, finances. Jerry Yang, co-creater of Yahoo!, is one of the good examples.

3. Europe
Compare to other continents except Africa, the history of Chinese immigrants to European Countries is short. And like the first generation of Chinese immigrants to the United States, the immigrants in Europe are still facing lots of cultural and racial problems including language, thus tending to be limited in Chinatown or even just a small area which is even not enough to be called as Chinatown. Therefore, lots of Chinese immigrants in Europe are just working with Chinese restaurants or Asian markets that sell imported groceries. With relatively small populations, they tend to be isolated in a way and thus, still on the process of adjusting in local countries.


C. Siz e of Chinese Capital Worldwide

Pan-china market which includes mainland China, Taiwan and

South Asian countries is valued as the third biggest market – following US, EU - in the world these days. That is for, the total GDP of the Pan-china countries is around US$ 2,580,000million which follows US$ 12,340,000million of NAFTA and US$ 10,960,000million of EU.

Also, approx. US$ 2 billion of circulating assets of overseas Chinese is used as a powerful investing capital in the world. According to Iwazaki Ikuo, the professor of Dakushoku university in Japan, overseas-Chinese enterprises are occupying 30% in Indonesia, 31% in Thailand 24% in Singapore and 22%in Philippine in the total amount of sales. Also, when it goes with the number of enterprises, 30% in Indonesia, 40% in Thailand, 35% in Malaysia, 33% in Singapore and 30% in Philippine, which makes 30% of the total capital of each countries owned by overseas-Chinese merchants.16 The Overseas Chinese capital is the most powerful in Mainland China. Until now, the total foreign direct invest to the mainland China is approx. US $ 600,000million and among them, US $ 400,000 million is assumed to be by overseas Chinese capital. In addition, large percentage of capitals from United States or Japan is assumed to be including overseas Chinese capital. And that is for, over the last experiences, overseas-Chinese enterprises are proved to be the least failing in investing to mainland China and thus, the investing capital through the overseas Chinese enterprises is growing.

15 16

화상 상권엔 해가 지지 않는다. Maeil Economy, 9.25.2005 화상 없으면 동남아 경제도 없다. Maeil Economy, 9.25.2005

A. The Business Style
There are certain characteristics in the business style that are commonly found among Chinese merchants and corporations. First characteristic is the ‘ownership’ management. In western companies, the owner of the company and CEO is clearly distinguished. The ownership is usually distributed among the shareholders and the shareholder with large proportion of the company’s total stock may have some influence in the management of the company. However, in Chinese companies the distinction is rather obscure. The ownership is distributed among few family members who founded the company and the family members of the founders own a large proportion of the company’s stock. The difference is that these owners, or the family members of the founder, have a large influence over the management of the company. There may be a CEO in a Chinese corporation but most of the time, even the CEO has to consult the founder before making the critical decisions of the company. This ownership management style of the Chinese companies made the ever-quick, ‘Top-Down’ decision making process possible. This ownership management arose because most of the Chinese companies are founded on the basis of family wealth and manpower. They don’t wasn’t to share their ownership outside the family members and that’s why many Chinese corporations don’t list their stocks on the stock market. Second characteristic is the risk averseness. Most Chinese companies are risk averse so they tend to invest on the real assets. Many of the current Chinese conglomerates started their business from the money and real estate market. For example, Hutchison Whampoa of Hong Kong, the largest Chinese company owned by Li Ka Xing, started from real estate business. So did the Sun Hun Kai (Hong Kong, 2nd largest) and the Cheung Kong Group (Hong Kong, 3rd largest) and Cathay Financial (Taiwan, 4th largest) and Dai Hwa Bank(Singapore, 5th largest) started from the money market. When you look into the financial statements of Chinese corporations many ratios show that they Chinese corporations are more strongly attached to cash and assets. Chinese corporations may look small from the outside but they are low on liabilities and financially healthy. Chinese people love to hold on to their current assets such as cash and stocks. Total of Hwa qiao capital is estimated to be over 2 trillion dollars, 1.5 trillion in the form of cash and bond and other 0.5 trillion in the form of stocks and

other assets. Such risk averseness is also implied in Chinese culture too. It is no wonder that Chinese people say “恭喜發財” (“May you make lot of money”) on Chinese New Year’s Day. So-called Guanxi network developed from the risk averseness of Chinese merchants and Chinese corporation usually do business with other Chinese people they knew before. A research showed that more than 50% of Chinese companies in mainland China do business through guanxi network and more then 39% of them do so outside china.

B. The Downside of their Business Style
However there is also the downside to the business styles of the Overseas Chinese. First of all, the ownership management style where the family controls the company could lead to ‘closed’ management. Owner may not always be the best CEO. This could lead to possible corruption within the company and harm the other shareholders and this could also hinder stable growth. There is need for Chinese corporations to scout a professional with know-how in running a business, give him the authority and open new businesses through association with other companies. Risk averseness may also hinder growth. Chinese people tend to invest in stable assets but this could also mean that you might have to give up an opportunity where you can make tremendous money. This excessive risk aversion is not appropriate for the business world of today where innovations are valued and business environments change constantly. Among the top 100 Chinese corporations, 28 of them were in the finances (bank, securities, and insurance), 23 in elecronics, 15 in the real estate business and 9 in the transportation business. All of these are traditional business where tangible assets are valued. Only 7 of them were in the IT business where intangible assets are more valued.


With their cunning business strategies and money-oriented attitude that earned them the nickname “The Jews of Asia,” most of the Overseas Chinese have achieved a great economic success in the countries the moved to. They also managed to successfully settle down and mingle with the existing society. The immigration was more prevalent during the 19h and 20th century, due to the turmoil and instability in the Mainland. The Chinese who moved out during this period and formed the Overseas Chinese Network that we observe now are considered as the old generation of the Overseas Chinese. Several decades have passed since the old generation of the Overseas Chinese moved outside China from the 19th Century. Many things have changed since then. Circumstances surrounding the immigration itself have changed. The business environment has changed greatly. Most importantly, the Overseas Chinese themselves have changed. The old generation Overseas Chinese has aged and is slowly giving way to the younger generation. These younger Overseas Chinese, especially those who moved after the 1980’s, are the new generation of the Overseas Chinese.

A. Old and New Generation: How ar e they Dif fer ent?
In December 7th, 2003, Won Ja Bao, the prime minister of China, arrived at the John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York. Just three hours after his arrival, he was ready to give a speech in front of several hundred welcoming Overseas Chinese crowd. “However far you may go, your hearts and mine are linked together and however big the shadow of a tree is at the sunset, you and the root of the tree is always connected,” he said quoting from Tagore’s poem. “And this is the relationship between hua qiao, hua ren, liu xue sheng and China.” The crowd responded fervously with thunderous clap. The message Won intended to deliver was clear. He wanted the Overseas Chinese to know that China never forgot them and will always regard them as a part of China. Won was delivering his speech especially for the new generation of the Overseas Chinese. They are mainly consisted of liu xue sheng (students studying abroad) and Chinese residents living abroad. They went abroad after the Chinese government began to advocate reform and the open-door policy in 1979. They are highly educated professionals and fit very perfectly well for the digital business environment. According to Professor Pil Seung Yang, a professor of history department in Kun Guk University, the new generation of Overseas Chinese, or xin

hua qiao, is equipped with knowledge, economic power, technology, local language and there are more of them in a highly developed country. According to Institute of International Education (IIE), the total number of all the foreign undergraduate and graduate students registered in the American universities from 2003 was 572,509 students. Chinese students (total of 61,765) were the second largest group only after Indian students (total of 79,736) but they have been number one in the past. The number of Chinese students studying in Japan (90,746 students) makes up 70% of all the foreign students studying in Japan (129,873 student). The new generation of Overseas Chinese differs from the older generation in several ways. The older generation usually engaged in manual labors like farming or ran small business like grocery stores and restaurants. However the new generation is moving into the high-paying occupation such as Information Technology (IT), finance, and other knowledge-based businesses. The older generation identified themselves as Chinese and stuck to their culture, but the new generation doesn’t necessarily feel that way. They are more global-minded and are very open to the other cultures of the world. For example, older generation only spoke Chinese and had difficulty learning the local language but for newer generation, learning the local language is a must.

B. The New Business of the New Generation
The new generation is rapidly moving into different business areas. They are making big appearances at the Silicon Valley. Chinese venture corporations make more that 100 billion dollars a year contributing greatly to the California’s IT industry. Take Jerry Yang, the founder of Yahoo! for example. He is a current board director and a former executive of the company. His net worth in 2003 was US$1.28 billion. Born in Taipei, Taiwan, He moved to San Jose, California when aged ten, with his single mother and a younger brother. His father had died when Yang was two. He only knew one English word on his arrival but mastering English in just three years. Yang admitted at Stanford University and received his B.S. and M.S. degrees in electrical engineering there. He co-created the Yahoo! Internet navigational guide in April 1994 with David Filo and co-founded Yahoo! Inc. in April 1995. Another example of the new generation in IT business would be Terry Guo of Hon Hai Group, Taiwan’s largest corporation. He set the successful example of combining the technology of the new generation Overseas Chinese and financing through the Overseas Chinese network. First, Guo scouted an Overseas Chinese from Hong Kong, who was working in an American multinational corporation, as a CEO of his newly formed

company Foxconn, and successfully launched a mobile phone business. The firm managed to merge a supplier of Nokia by financing through Hong Kong stock market and contracted with Nokia to supply the parts. In three years, Foxconn became the largest IT manufacturer in Taiwan and the largest supplier of Nokia. The new generation also moved into the finance and other knowledge based businesses. For example, Fang Fenglai of Goldman Sachs China and Charles Li of JP Morgan closed the big deal when CNOOC (Chinese National Offshore Oil Corporation) bought Unocal, a major American petroleum company. Other prominent figures in finance are Erh-Fei Liu of Merrill Lynch and Jonathan Zhu of Morgan Stanley China. Also it is assumed that one out of three deans of major American Universities have Chinese background.

C. The New Tr end in the Chinese Immigration
Experts summarize the Chinese immigration trend in two ways. First, the number of hua qiao is decreasing while the number of hua r en is increasing. Hua qiao are the Overseas Chinese with living outside Chinese Mainland whereas hua ren simply means the descendents of hua people. Therefore hua ren is considered the bigger term than hua qiao, and hua qiao even includes people of Taiwan in China’s perspective. In the past, hua qiao were all regarded as hua ren but as the localization of the Overseas Chinese grew stronger and the number of hua qiao getting local nationality increased, the dichotomy arose. About 80% of the overseas Chinese are assumed to have acquired the local nationality. Chinese government is constantly trying to hurdle both group under the idea of “One China” as it’s vital to keep their ties stronger for keeping the Overseas Chinese Network alive. Second, number of Chinese returning to the mainland is increasing. This trend has resulted from the increased contact among the Overseas Chinese and the possible hardship in the originating country. For example the riot that broke in Indonesia in May 1998 devastated the Chinese population living there. The biggest victim of this riot was not the Indonesians but the Chinese. Most of the 1200 dead were Chinese and about 5000 Chinese shops and houses were attacked. This riot broke because the locals were frustrated at the abnormal economic structure where the Chinese, who make up only 3.2% of the population of Indonesia, own 80% of the wealth. They also felt that the Chinese residents in Indonesia sent their money to China and Hong Kong and hurt the Indonesian economy.


A. Futur e Outlook of the Hua Qiao
Ties among Overseas Chinese Network are growing stronger. For example, the World Chinese Entrepreneurs Convention as an "Economic Olympic" is held every two years to bring together overseas Chinese entrepreneurs to enhance economic co-operation and promote better understanding among each other and business communities worldwide. The Convention focuses on economic and cultural issues pertaining to Chinese entrepreneurship. The World Chinese Entrepreneurs Convention was first conceptualized by the former Prime Minister of Singapore, Lee Kwan Yu in 1991, and has been successfully staged in 7 nations. It shows how the economic power of overseas Chinese is expected grow along with the growth of China ◊ creates synergy

B. The opportunity to w ork with Overseas Chinese: WCEC 2005 in Seoul
A total of 3098 businessmen from 30 different countries attended this convention. They mainly discussed about increasing the trade between Korean and Chinese company, increasing the investment of Chinese capital, and forming global network of Chinese company. What Korea earned:  It attracted 830 million dollar worth Chinese capital o Singapore’s Ascendas 500mil in real estate and trasportation business, o China’s Zhong Chang Telecom 300mil in Chinatown at Incheon o US’s WI Harper 30 mil in Korean IT & BT companies.  Contracts for Trade (450 mil discussed 130 mil actual contracts)  Gave a new and positive impression of Korea o Impression of Chinese-friendly country o Other positive images; IT, BT, Korean wave,

o Increased status of Hua qiao in Korea So Korea won the cooperation of the Overseas Chinese Network

To conclude, we could say that Overseas Chinese should not be discriminated. They represent a huge economic opportunity, with a current capital of overseas Chinese by $ 2 trillions (i.e. 1/10th of the value of NYSE). They can create energy with Korean Companies and new market opportunity, like by way of illustration the cooperation between LG and Hutchison Whampoa to enter European market. To do so in Korea, it is recommended relaxing the restrictions for foreigners, and being a part of the Overseas Chinese Network, in order to create a long-term friendship.


Books o The Encyclopedia of the Chinese Overseas, Chinese Heritage center, Harvard University Press, 1999 o A Brief History of Chinese and Japanese Civilizations, Conrad Shirokauer, Harcourt College Publishers, 1989 o China and Huaqiao – invisible emperor, the history of Huaqiao network, Sterling Seagrave, premium books, 2002 o Huaqiao, Jeong Sung Ho, Sallim, 2004

Articles o “Asian American Professors Call for Boycott of Energy Department”, 03.23.2000, Asian Week o “Le triomphe de la diaspora chinoise”, Hélène Vissière , L’Expansion, 04.28.2004 o “Overseas Chinese: how powerful are they?”, Phar Kim Beng, Asia Times Online, 12.10.2002 o Maeil Economy, 9.25.2005

Websites o o o o o The 8th World Chinese Entrepreneurs Convention Conference: o Mae Il Kyung Je internet homepage,  "The Power of Hwa Shang" # 1 - 5, Mae Il Kyung Je, Sept. 25th - 29th, 2005


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