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In the Dragon's Den: African Traders in Guangzhou

Lyons, M., Brown, Alison Margaret Braithwaite ORCID: and Li, Z. 2012. In the Dragon's Den: African Traders in Guangzhou. Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 38 (5) , pp. 869-888. 10.1080/1369183X.2012.668030

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A growing literature studies the Chinese diasporas in Africa, involved in the import and distribution of manufactured goods across the continent, identifying their economic and social strategies and their interactions with African urban and political life. In contrast, the counter-flow of African private traders to China has been relatively little studied, yet is part of significant changes in African economies and societies, and creates new interactions in Chinese cities. The commerce in which they have engaged since the introduction of the ‘Open Door’ policy and the subsequent rapid rise in bilateral trade has been undertaken through not only a period of booming international trade, but also a fuel crisis and a world financial crisis in 2008. This article explores the African diaspora in Guangzhou, China's major export hub. Drawing on ongoing work by the authors begun in 2005, it examines how the Guangzhou–Africa trade has changed over the period, what strategies have been adopted by migrants at the Guangzhou end of the value chain, and how their perceptions of their migration, their migrant community and their host city (and its perceptions of them) have changed over time. Findings are theorised in relation to grass-roots transnationalism.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Geography and Planning (GEOPL)
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HF Commerce
H Social Sciences > HT Communities. Classes. Races
Uncontrolled Keywords: China–Africa, Migration, Transnational Trade, Value Chain
Publisher: Routledge
ISSN: 1369-183X
Last Modified: 21 Oct 2022 10:31

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