In a lengthy Saturday essay, the Wall Street Journal describes how many Chinese are leaving for cleaner air, better schools and more opportunity, but Beijing is also keeping its eye on them. A survey by the Shanghai research firm Hurun Report found that 64% of China’s rich—defined as those with assets of more than $1.6 million—are either emigrating or planning to.
Apparently, the Chinese elite are discovering they can buy a comfortable lifestyle at surprisingly affordable prices in places such as California and the Australian Gold Coast, while no amount of money can purchase an escape in China from the immense problems afflicting its urban society: pollution, food safety, a broken education system. Moreover, first-generation businessmen — the ones who powered China’s economic rise — now dream of a secure retirement and legal safety in places like the US and Canada.
However, it was also mentioned that China’s leaders are haunted by history because the destiny of modern China has been shaped by the Chinese who left. For example: The overseas Chinese of Southeast Asia provided critical support for Sun Yat-sen’s 1911 revolution, which toppled the Qing.
To read the whole article, The Great Chinese Exodus, go to the website of the Wall Street Journal.
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