Africans in China

There's a lot of talk about China going to Africa, but the reverse is happening as well:
Based on official statistics, since 2003, the number of Africans in Guangzhou has been growing at 30-40% annually. Based on a report in the Guangzhou Daily, there might already be 100,000 in the community. They come from Nigeria, Guinea, Cameroon, Liberia, and Mali. Amongst these, Africa’s most populous country Nigeria claims first place.

They primarily live in village-districts in the city of Guangdong (like Dongpu, Dengfeng Jie, Yongping Jie). They do their business in a few large-scale China-Africa commerce malls.
Mutual trust has a lot to do with the cohesion of the community:
Africans especially trust, and depend on their fellow people; that’s why we call each other ‘brother’ and ’sister’.” Mall management Chen Lianren told the reporter that every store opened by an African becomes a focal point, and attracts many of his fellow countrymen, increasing the traffic flow for other stores in the mall. For that reason, they lowered the rent for African tenants.
I think anyone who has lived as an expat can relate to this - a compatriot you might not necessarily trust absolutely at home appears in a totally different light in a foreign setting where no one else speaks your language.
Williams and other Africans with an economic foundation all share a “Chinese Dream”. They hope that by struggling for 4-5 years, they will be able to open a trade company or service center, and make large profits from servicing the rapidly growing Chinese-African trade. Based on published research, more than 20,000 Africans are long-term residents in Guangzhou (more than six months).
That the pull is economic is not surprising to me, but the magnitude is. I guess if motivations are economic, totally understandable why one would pick China over Europe or the U.S.

Via MR.

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