This is part of the continuing posts on the 'Year of China 2010' theme...
This time, we shall be discussing briefly on Chinese in Africa. Apparently, recent research has shown that there are at least 500,000 (which is half a million!) Chinese people residing on the African continent currently. A surprise isn't it? Given that we hardly hear of Chinese in Africa, or for that matter, any other nationalities living in Africa actually..haha..
These Chinese are overwhelmingly mainland Chinese labourers as well as contractors and engineers whom go over to Africa with Chinese companies to build roads, schools, hospitals, buildings,etc as part of Chinese government policy and plans or on a private commercial basis.
There are also Chinese whom have lived in South Africa for decades and speak the language there as well as are politicians,etc. This was really cool to find out as i found out that most of the 'old chinese south africans' are of Taiwanese origin given that Taiwan had diplomatic ties with South Africa all the way up to the end of apartheid.
My current apartment mate is Congolese (I live with 3 other people currently in Pyrmont.) She has some Belgian blood in her as apparently her granddad has some Belgian relations. She is the first person from Congo that i've met and she surprised me when she told me that there are thousands of Chinese in Congo, owning all the big stores and supermarkets and being able to speak the local language as well as some French/English! I was like...WHAT, there are Chinese, and I mean LARGE numbers of Chinese living and owning businesses in Congo.... of all places?!! Wow..the Chinese literally are upwardly mobile and everywhere:-)