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Trade & Investment

45,000 more rich Chinese waiting to move to Vancouver, Canada


Most applicants for rich investor visas are Chinese wanting to live, like these Lunar New Year revellers, in British Columbia

Most applicants for rich investor visas are Chinese wanting to live, like these Lunar New Year revellers, in British Columbia

Over 60pc seeking Canadian wealthy investor visa are from China and want to live in British Columbia’s main city, data shows

A South China Morning Post investigation into Canada’s immigration programme for millionaire investors has revealed the extraordinary extent to which it has become devoted to a single outcome: Helping rich mainland Chinese settle in Vancouver.

Immigration Department data obtained by the Post suggests there was a backlog of more than 45,000 rich Chinese waiting for approval of their applications to move to British Columbia as of January last year. They are estimated to have a minimum combined wealth of C$12.9 billion (HK$90 billion).

The Chinese queue for British Columbia under the scheme – which halted new applications to deal with the backlog in 2012 – is about six times the combined annual applications from all nationalities to the investor migrant programmes run by the US, Britain and Australia. It also holds more than twice as many Chinese immigrants as have moved to the province under the federal investor visa scheme from 2008 to 2012. This suggests the queue could sustain the current pace of millionaire migration to the city for a decade to come, even if applications remain frozen.

Ottawa has vowed that the applications will be processed and few are typically rejected.

The queue of millionaires at Vancouver’s doorstep has major implications in a city where housing is rated the second-least affordable in the world, behind Hong Kong. Census data shows 96 per cent of all recent Chinese immigrants to British Columbia live in greater Vancouver and the proportion among the wealthy is even higher.

Kerry Starchuk is a lifelong resident of the Vancouver satellite city of Richmond, the most Chinese city in the western hemisphere and a favoured destination of wealthy mainland Chinese. She fears the potential impact of the visa queue.

“Money is taking precedence over everything,” said Starchuk, 56, who has campaigned for increased English signage in Richmond. “It’s taking over the social fabric, Canadian culture … You can see [the wealth disparity] in the houses that are being built – it’s no longer a single-family home, it’s a mansion with gates and security.”

The Post’s estimates are conservative, since they do not include Chinese who enter via a separate investor immigrant programme run by Quebec, 90 per cent of whose arrivals eventually end up living elsewhere in Canada.

Money is taking precedence over everything. It’s taking over the social fabric

RICHMOND RESIDENT KERRY STARCHUK

Ottawa has pledged to process the backlog of federal applications. Under the scheme’s current rules, principal applicants worth a minimum of C$1.6 million must loan the Canadian government C$800,000, interest-free, for five years. They and family members can later apply for citizenship.

The overall queue for federal investor visas included 57,308 applications lodged in Hong Kong and Beijing, according to an Immigration Department spreadsheet obtained by the Post, dated January 8, 2013. That is more than 75 per cent of the whole queue, and separate provincial arrival data indicates about 99 per cent of the applicants are mainland Chinese.

Since 2007, 80.8 per cent of Chinese applicants to the scheme have sought to live in British Columbia, the Post’s data shows. If that holds true for the backlog of applicants, some 45,800 rich mainland Chinese would be bound for the province, representing 61 per cent of all applicants.

The trend appears to be growing. Chinese immigrants planning to settle in British Columbia made up 65 per cent of all applications to the popular wealth migration scheme in 2011.

The Post’s documentation was provided by Vancouver immigration lawyer Richard Kurland, who obtained it via freedom-of-information requests, costly data searches and scouring of obscure data.

Previously released statistics on investor immigrant arrivals released by the British Columbia government give no hint of the sheer volume of Chinese millionaires seeking to move there. That data showed arrivals between 2005 and 2012 averaged about 4,600 per year.

Yet the Post’s investigation shows the number of applications to migrate to the province has dwarfed arrivals in recent years. In 2010 alone, there were 27,535 such applications, with 92 per cent of them coming from Chinese applicants.

David Mulroney, Canada’s ambassador to China from 2009 to 2012, said there was “a degree of inevitability [that most rich Chinese will seek to settle in Vancouver] given the profile that Vancouver enjoys”.

“It’s hard not to be impressed with Vancouver … but it would be nice to see more parts of Canada benefiting from immigration and the dynamism that that brings,” Mulroney said.

“People at the end of the day are free to move and will live wherever they want, but … we need to be ready to work more creatively with the provinces and ensure that people understand the advantages that Canada offers east of the Rocky Mountains. Vancouver is a wonderful place but there are lots of wonderful places in Canada.”

The Post’s data also suggests authorities may be trying to mitigate the impact of the scheme on British Columbia. From 2003 to 2010, the province consistently received around 50 per cent of all investor migrant arrivals in Canada. However, in 2011 British Columbia’s share fell sharply to 36 per cent. Its share of investor landings fell again in 2012, to 28 per cent.

Source: SCMP “Exclusive: Vancouver facing an influx of 45,000 more rich Chinese”
 
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About chankaiyee2

Author of the book "Tiananmen's Tremendous Achievements" about how with the help of Tiananmen Protests, talented scholars with moral integrity seized power in the Party and state and brought prosperity to China. The second edition of the book will be published within a few days to mark the 25th anniversary of Tiananmen Protests All the parts in the first edition remain in the second edition with a few changes due to information available later and better understanding. There are also some changes for improvements of style. The new parts are Chapters 12-19 on events in China after the first edition was published: The fierce power struggle for succession between reformists and conservatives; Xi Jinping winning all elders’ support during his mysterious disappearance for 2 weeks in early September, 2012; and Xi Jinping Cyclone. Chan Kai Yee's new book: SPACE ERA STRATEGY: The Way China Beats The US An eye-opening book that tells the truth how the US is losing to China. The US is losing as it adopts the outdated strategy of Air-Sea Battle while China adopts the space era strategy to pursue integrated space and air capabilities: It is losing due to its diplomacy that has given rise to Russian-Chinese alliance. US outdated strategy has enabled China to catch up and surpass the US in key weapons: Hypersonic weapons (HGV) that Pentagon regards as the weapon that will dominate the world in the future. Aerospaceplane in China’s development of space-air bomber that can engage enemy anywhere in the world within an hour and destroy an entire aircraft carrier battle group within minutes. Anti-satellite (ASAT) weapons, anti-ASAT weapons, stealth aircrafts, drones, AEW&C, etc. The book gives detailed descriptions of China’s weapon development based on information mainly from Chinese sources that the author monitors closely. U.S. Must Not Be Beaten by China! China is not a democracy. Its political system cannot prevent the emergence of a despotic leader or stop such a leader when he begins to bring disasters to people. A few decades ago, Mao Zedong, the worst tyrant in world history did emerge and bring disasters to Chinese people. He wanted to fight a nuclear war to replace capitalism with communism but could not bring nuclear holocaust to world people as China was too weak and poor at that time. If a despot like Mao Zedong emerges when China has surpassed the US in military strength, world people will suffer the misery experienced by Chinese people in Mao era. China surpassing the US in GDP is not something to worry about as China has the heavy burden to satisfy its huge population, but China surpassing the US in military strength will be world people’s greatest concern if China remains an autocracy. US people are of much better quality than Chinese people. What they lack is a wise leader to adopt the correct strategy and diplomacy and the creative ways to use its resources in developing its military capabilities. I hope that with the emergence of a great leader, the US can put an end to its decline and remain number one in the world. China, US, space era strategy, air-sea battle, space-air bomber, arms race, weapon development, chan kai yee

Discussion

5 thoughts on “45,000 more rich Chinese waiting to move to Vancouver, Canada

  1. Obviously, elite Chinese who have grossly profited from a totalitarian political system have issues with staying at home and enjoying life in China and are making a choice the lower class cannot ever make, at least lawfully, Instead (as the article says) preferring to enjoy a democracy with its free market and free travel opportunities and good government services.

    Like

    Posted by supTweet | February 9, 2014, 7:45 pm
  2. Reblogged this on Home Grown News Media.

    Like

    Posted by andrewhagle | February 10, 2014, 2:44 am
  3. Reblogged this on Brittius.com.

    Like

    Posted by Brittius | February 10, 2014, 3:51 am
  4. I am travelling to Canada to explore the industry that I work in (I am a computer engineer from Hong Kong). I plan to visit Ontario and Alberta including the cities of Toronto, Calgary, and Edmonton. In addition to visiting these cities can someone please recommend where it would be useful to visit in order order to find companies hiring computer engineers?

    Like

    Posted by jaybrazo1 | November 25, 2015, 5:04 pm

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