The Overseas Chinese: Migration and Organization
Date of submission:
1. How important were the overseas Chinese politically and economically for China between the lifting of the ban on Chinese migration in 1893 and the founding of the People’s Republic in 1949?
In 1893 the Qing lifted the ban on foreign travel, this was mainly motivated by the wealth of resources that the Chinese living abroad had. The Qing adopted a nationality law containing a clause to legitimize its claim to these subjects. This principle was called jus sanginis, (Zerba, 2008). The nationality law was later adopted by the nationalist government and later by PRC. The Chinese viewed themselves as temporarily residents with the intention of returning back to china. During the republican period (1949), Chinese governments continued to emphasize links with overseas Chinese.
The overseas Chinese played a pivotal role in the economic front for china because during period of national disasters, they would raise money. They also facilitated in the building of china’s infrastructure through the contributions to industrial programs such as building roads, bridges, schools, railways and contributed on other investments for the china. Their remittances to china were important because it was one of the main sources of income of households in china. The importance was also seen in the attempts by the Qing dynasty to get the support from the Chinese merchants through awards and recognition in their contribution to the Chinese economy. They helped the economy by buying Chinese products and boycotted foreign products. They were also instrumental in the modernization of factories and quality control of the Chinese commodities that were exported. In the mid-1930s they conducted movements for “national products” in an attempt to propel levels of national pride among themselves.
Overseas Chinese also contributed significantly politically by...