Associations as Social Capital of ‘New Chinese Migrants’ in Africa: Empirical Investigations of Ghana, Zimbabwe, Tanzania and South Africa
As a new economic pole in a globalizing world, Africa has attracted great numbers of Chinese migrants from mainland China since the late 1980s, though this community is still significantly understudied. Current research on this community tends to adopt either a realpolitik or an ethnographic approach. This chapter offers an alternative perspective by looking at the interplay between the macro and micro levels. First, it explores the roles that Chinese migrants have played in bilateral relations between China and African states through various types of voluntary associations. Second, the chapter examines the dynamics of migrant networking activities, illuminating their strategies to adapt to new local environments and the ways in which they take advantage of opportunities provided by the homeland, China. Based on empirical investigations in Ghana, Zimbabwe, Tanzania and South Africa, the chapter analyzes the transformative characteristics of voluntary migrant associations.
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