African Traders in Yiwu: Expanding Transnational Trade Networks and Navigating China’s Complex Multicultural Environment
China sends and receives big numbers of migrants. As China has become a major destination of global and African migrants in recent years, the country’s immigration policies and related practices deserve particular attention. The growing presence of Africans gives rise to many important issues. China is a country with ethnic and religious tensions as well as socioeconomic disparities between different provinces, and this factor seems to work against stability and cohesion for Chinese people. While ethnic diversity and differences among the Chinese population could potentially be a driver of multiculturalism, they have rather created tensions between ethnic and religious groups given the dominance of the Han Chinese that extols Chineseness. This chapter analyses how Africans and African traders with different backgrounds navigate in complex multicultural environments in China.
- Afolayan, A.A. 2011. Dynamics of Mobility of International Traders in Nigeria: Economic Crisis, Globalisation and Visa Situation, Paper Presented at the Fourth International Symposium of the International Network on Migration and Development (INMD): ‘Global Crisis and Migratory Strategies: Redefining Migration Policies’, Latin American School of Social Sciences (FLASCO), Ecuador Campus, Quito, Ecuador, 18–20 May.Google Scholar
- Barron, S., J. Field, and T. Schuller. 2000. Social Capital: Critical Issues. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
- Bhattacharjya, S. 2015. Merchants of Yiwu. China Daily Europe, September 11. http://europe.chinadaily.com.cn/epaper/2015-09/11/content_21842445.htm. Accessed 20 Oct 2015.
- ———. 2012. Africans in China: A Sociocultural Study and Its Implications for Africa-China Relations. Amherst: Cambria Press.Google Scholar
- Bodomo, A., and E. Ma. 2010. Africans in Yiwu, China’s Largest Commodity Market. Pambazuka News, 484. http://www.pambazuka.net/en/category.php/africa_china/64915. Accessed 15 Sept 2015.
- Castillo, R. 2014. Feeling at Home in the “Chocolate City”: An Exploration of Place-Making Practices and Structures of Belonging Amongst Africans in Guangzhou. Inter-Asia Cultural Studies 15 (2): 235–257. http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/14649373.2014.911513#.VfiLAPP4C70. Accessed 15 Sept 2015.
- Cavusgil, S.T., G. Knight, and J. Riesenberger. 2014. International Business: The New Realities. 3rd ed. Upper Saddle River: Prentice Hall.Google Scholar
- Cissé, D. 2013. South-South Migration and Sino-African Small Traders: A Comparative Study of Chinese in Senegal and Africans in China. African Review of Economics and Finance 5 (1): 17–28.Google Scholar
- ———. 2015. African Traders in Yiwu: Their Trade Networks and Their Role in the Distribution of “Made in China” Products in Africa. Journal of Pan African Studies 7 (10): 44–64.Google Scholar
- Demirtepe, M.T., and I.A. Bozbey. 2012. Accommodation or Assimilation?: Chinese Government Policies Toward Uyghur Minority. In USAK Yearbook of Politics and International Relations, ed. I. Bal and M.T. Demirtepe, vol. 5. Ankara: International Strategic Research Organization.Google Scholar
- Ebin, V. 1995. International Networks of a Trading Diaspora: The Mourides of Senegal Abroad. In La ville à guichets fermés? Itinéraires, réseaux et insertion urbaine, ed. P. Antoine and A.B. Diop. Dakar: IFAN/ORSTROM.Google Scholar
- Fafchamps, M. 2001. The Role of Business Networks in Market Development in Sub-Saharan Africa. In Community and Market Economic Development, ed. M. Aoki and Y. Hayami. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
- Fafchamps, M., J. Pender, and E. Robinson. 1995. ‘Enterprise Finance in Zimbabwe’, Regional Program for Enterprise Development, Africa Division. Washington, DC: The World Bank.Google Scholar
- Giordan, H. 1994. ‘Multicultural and Multi-Ethnic Societies’, UNESCO Management of Social Transformations (MOST), Discussion Paper Series no. 1. http://www.unesco.org/most/giordeng.htm. Accessed 21 Sept 2015.
- Golub, S., and J. Hansen-Lewis. 2012. Informal Trading Networks in West Africa: The Mourides of Senegal/the Gambia and the Yoruba of Benin/Nigeria. In The Informal Sector in Francophone Africa: Firm Size, Productivity and Institutions, ed. A.A. Mbaye and N. Benjamin. Washington, DC: The World Bank.Google Scholar
- Mathews, G., and Y. Yang. 2012. How Africans Pursue Low-End Globalization in Hong Kong and Mainland China. Journal of Current Chinese Affairs 41 (2): 95–120.Google Scholar
- Mueller, A., and R. Wehrhahn. 2013. Transnational Business Networks of African Intermediaries in China: Practices of Networking and the Role of Experiential Knowledge. Journal of Geographical Society of Berlin 144 (1): 82–97.Google Scholar
- Pelican, M., and M. Şaul. 2014. Global African Entrepreneurs: A New Research Perspective on Contemporary African Migration. Urban Anthropology 43 (1–3): 1–16.Google Scholar
- Rowswell, M. 2012. What Are the Differences Between wàiguórén and lǎowài. Quora, January 13. https://www.quora.com/What-are-the-differences-in-use-between-laowai-%E8%80%81%E5%A4%96-and-waiguoren-%E5%A4%96%E5%9B%BD%E4%BA%BA. Accessed 23 Sept 2015.