Sunday, February 23, 2014

Global Times Editor Hu Xijin Ponders Why So Many Wealthy Chinese Want to Emigrate

Global Times Editor Hu Xijin's Weibo
On February 13, 2014, the state-sponsored Global Times published an editorial entitled “Wealthy Migration Shouldn’t be Politicized” (“富人移民潮”的政治含义被夸大了). An excerpt:
Canada announced Wednesday the cancellation of the Immigrant Investor Program popular among wealthy Chinese.
. . . .
Chinese account for more than half of the immigrants who'll face mounting immigration difficulties with Ottawa shuttering the wealth-based visa scheme.
. . . .
In final analysis, maintaining the prosperity and stability of China conforms with the interests of the wealthy.
According to Forbes:
[A]mong the 59,000 applications pending for the program, more than 45,000 were from mainland Chinese. Data from some Canadian provinces indicated that about 99 per cent of applicants are mainland Chinese.
According to the Wall Street Journal:
[In 2013,] 6,895 Chinese nationals were issued visas through the [United States’ investor visa] program, outpacing all other nationalities by a wide margin, according to State Department data. South Koreans, the next largest group, were issued 364.
The Global Times’ editorial posed the following questions:
What has driven rich Chinese and the middle-class to migrate to the West? Does a lack of freedom and democracy in China's society make them feel insecure both physically and financially?
The Global Times did not answer those questions.

On February 12, 2014, Hu Xijin (胡锡进), editor of the Global Times, posted this on his Sina Weibo:
Occasionally the Global Times will publish articles on on extremely sensitive topics, but will not put them online. The reason for this is that that the online public opinion ecology will intensify their sensitivity, and this acts at cross purposes with our intent to desensitize these issues. Our explorations can only begin offline, with the hope that society will gradually adapt. Progress is a difficult thing.
The following day (the day of the editorial’s publication), Hu posted this on his Sina Weibo:
I met an old friend, very wealthy, opened his own medium-sized company. The kind of guy who will spend 20, 30 thousand on a vacation to Hainan, but who has nothing but complaints about the country. I asked him why, and he said the most important reasons were unhappiness, air, and food safety, no right to speak, not to mention the country's politics. He said a man has aspirations, but there is no way to have any impact in this country. Today, everyone in China feels unhappy, and feels they're not getting what they should be getting. This truly is a problem.