Contrary to some beliefs, China does not have a sinister plot to invade Africa, buy up its land, and send its people to populate the continent in an effort to secure valuable natural resources and address its growing problems of land scarcity, food production and overpopulation. In fact, increasing numbers of Chinese in Africa are independent migrants, making their own way to countries across the African continent and eking out livings in Africa's large cities, small towns and even rural backwaters. There are students and professionals, fortune-seekers and adventurers, as well as growing numbers of 'entrepreneurs' - so called because while they have never operated their own businesses in China, they are doing so in their newly adopted African countries. They are coming to Africa to seek out a better life, as many immigrants around the globe have done for centuries.
This book examines these Chinese migrants - not the Chinese workers who come on contract with large construction or mining projects, but those who venture out on their own and aims to find what motivates them to move to and settle in some of the most challenging places on the planet. The book examines thirteen different African countries and makes the argument that these countries, based on their histories with China, their respective levels of development, and their national socio-economic and political conditions create different opportunities and attract different types of migrants.
1. Introduction 2. Historical background 3. Where there are natural resources: Angola, Equatorial Guinea, and Ghana 4. Where there are no natural resources: Mali and Senegal 5. Post-conflict opportunities: the DRC and Angola 6. Chinese in small African nations: Cape Verde, Lesotho, Namibia 7. Chinese in Africa's "Failed States": Zimbabwe, the Sudan's 8. Chinese in Zambia 9. Chinese in South Africa 10. The Future for Chinese communities in Africa