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  • 1. I conducted fieldwork in Zimbabwe from November 2014 to March 2015. During this period I interviewed more than 40 new Chinese immigrants and 10 Zimbabweans.
  • 2. Tianze Tobacco Company (Private) Limited played a pivotal role in the recovery of Zimbabwe’s tobacco industry. See Longton Mukwereza (2015), “Situating TianZe’s Role in Reviving Zimbabwe’s Flue-Cured Tobacco Sector in the Wider Discourse on Zimbabwe-China Cooperation: Will the Scorecard Remain Win-Win?” China and Brazil in Africa Agriculture Project Working Paper 115, p. 8. Sinosteel Corporation’s subsidiary, Zimbabwe Iron and Steel Company Limited, for example, employs more than 6000 Zimbabweans. See “Speech by Chinese Ambassador in Zimbabwe on the 60th Anniversary of the University of Zimbabwe,” May 3, 2015, http://gb.cri. cn/42071/2015/05/03/6351s4949912.htm, accessed June 9, 2015.
  • 3. Interview, Li Xinfeng, chairman of the ZCBA, Harare, February 4, 2015. About the hyperinflation, please see J. Hanlon, J. Manjengwa & T. Smart (2013), Zimbabwe Takes Back Its Land (Cape Town: Jacana Media (Pty) Ltd), p. 94.
  • 4. On January 1, 2015, I went to the Chinese graveyard located in a suburb of Harare, where more than 80 Chinese are buried. Most were from Guangdong, including Taishan, Jingmei, Huangchong in Xinhui, Jiangmen, Chishui in Kaiping, Guxiang in Zhongshan, and Nanhai and Shunde in Foshan.
  • 5. Interview, Yu Yongyuan, a businessman who has opened a little printing house, Harare, November 23, 2014.
  • 6. The buildings in GulfShopping Complex were painted pink, so the complex is known to Chinese as the “little pink buildings.”
  • 7. The leaders of these informal associations include Zhao Ke, the acting vice chairman of the Chinese Federation of Zimbabwe, Li Manjuan, the acting vice chairwoman and general secretary of the ZCBA, and Luo Yuesheng, the chairman of the Association of Chinese Northern Fellow Countrymen in Zimbabwe. Interview, Zhao Ke, Harare, January 25, 2015.
  • 8. “Zimbabwe Chinese Business Association was established in Harare,” October 3, 2004, This email address is being protected from spam bots, you need Javascript enabled to view it , accessed May 9, 2015; see also “a brief historical retrospect of big events of Zimbabwe Chinese Business Association in the last ten years,” (internal materials), August 29, 2014.
  • 9. See “Zimbabwe Chinese Association was established”, September
  • 18, 2007, tent_6748014.htm, accessed May 9, 2015. It was combined into the CFZ as its Bulawayo branch on March 30, 2014; “Ambassador Qi Shunkang attended the inaugural ceremony of Association of Chinese Northern Fellow Countrymen in Zimbabwe”, September 21, 2010, http://www.fmprc., accessedMay 9, 2015; “Chinese Federation of Zimbabwe was established”, April 1, 2014,,

accessed May 9, 2015.

  • 10. Interview through Wechat, Li Manjuan, Beijing, May 14, 2015.
  • 11. The website of Zimbabwe Chinese Web is
  • 12. The public names of Zim-times Wechat Offical Account and Zimbabwe Chinese Web We chat Offical Account are Zimbabwe-times and Zimbabwe_Chinese Web respectively.
  • 13. Interview, Wang Jianhong, vice chairwoman of the Chinese Federation of Zimbabwe, Harare, March 2, 2015.
  • 14. They can watch 17 Chinese television channels in Zimbabwe, including CCTV and some popular provincial channels.
  • 15. Interview, Zhu Xuewu, manager of Zim-China Wanjin Tianrui Food Processing (Private) Limited, Chegutu, December 14, 2014.
  • 16. Interview, Liu Huilin, owner of a bakery in Chegutu, Chegutu, December 14, 2014.
  • 17. Interview, Wang Hong, owner of a retailer in Gweru, Gweru, February 24, 2015.
  • 18. Interview, Li Yubin, businessman in Harare, Harare, February 3, 2015.
  • 19. Interview, Wei Changjin, businessman in Harare, Harare, January 29, 2015.
  • 20. Interview, Mr. Gao, Harare, February 3, 2015.
  • 21. Interview, Mrs. Song, Harare, February 11, 2015.
  • 22. Interview, Fang Wei, businessman in Harare, Harare, January 29, 2015.
  • 23. Interview, Guo Yongwei, vice chairman of CFZ, Bulawayo, February 25,2015.
  • 24. Interview, Zhu Xuewu, Chegutu, January 26, 2015.
  • 25. Interview, Brain Chamboko, member of the Zimbabwean table tennis team, Harare, January 10, 2015.
  • 26. Interview, George, driver of Wild Africa Travel Agency, Harare, December 28,2014.
  • 27. Interview, Anderson Ngondo, driver of Wild Africa Travel Agency, Harare, January 5, 2015.
  • 28. Interview, Anderson Ngondo, Harare, January 17, 2015.
  • 29. Interview, Li Xinfeng, Harare, February 4, 2015.
  • 30. Interview, Xia Hongyan, employee of Tianze Tobacco Company (Private) Limited, Harare, February 10, 2015.
  • 31. Interview, Anderson Ngondo, Harare, January 17, 2015.
  • 32. Interview, Troe, policy office, Harare, February 27, 2015.
  • 33. Interview, Li Xinfeng, Harare, February 4, 2015.
  • 34. Interview, Yi Shutong, general manager of Anhui Tianrui Environment Technology Co., Harare, Ltd., November 24, 2014.
  • 35. “Initiative by Chinese Federation of Zimbabwe to Chinese in Zimbabwe”, Zim-times, Issue 22, January 22, 2015.
  • 36. “How far can we go if we continue offering bribes in Zimbabwe?” Zim- times, 21, January 16, 2015; “Chinese Still Need to Regulate Themselves in Zimbabwe,” Zim-times, 23, January 21, 2015; “Being Unpopular and Unacceptable, Did Chinese Really Integrate into Africa?” Zim-times, 25, January 26, 2015.
  • 37. Interview, Zhao Ke, February 15, 2015.
  • 38. Interview, Li Xinfeng, February 4, 2015.
  • 39. Interview, Wang Jianhong, March 2, 2015.
  • 40. “‘Father’s Car’—The Pride of Gweru’s Street Children,” December 11, 2014, =5616&highlight=father; “Loving Mums, Love in Africa,” February 4, 2014,; “2015 ‘Love Without Boundary’ Children’s Party,” February 23, 2015, http://www. AE%D0%C4%CE%DE%B9%FA%BD%E7, accessed May 21, 2015. Before visiting Zimbabwe on December 1, 2015, the Chinese president, Xi Jinping, praised “Father Cheng” and “Love in Africa” mums group in his article published in Zimbabwe’s newspaper The Herald. See Xi Jinping, “Let the Sino-Zim Flower Bloom with New Splendor,” The Herald, November 30, 2015.
  • 41. Interview, Zhao Ke, Beijing, September 15, 2015.
  • 42. “Sino-Zim Friendly Soccer was played in Harare to celebrate the 35th anniversary of diplomatic relations,” February 23, 2015, /42071/2015/02/23/7211s4880002.htm, accessed May 21, 2015.
  • 43. I was one of the organizers of the game.


Chen, X. (2012). Predicament for the Businesses of New Chinese Immigrants in South Africa and Its Root Causes. Overseas Chinese History Studies, 6(2), 28-35.

Chung, F. (2006). Re-living the Second Chimurenga. Harare: Weaver Press.

Eisenman, J. (2005). Zimbabwe: China’s African Ally. China Brief, 5(15), 9-11.

Li, A. (2000). A History of Overseas Chinese in Africa. Beijing: Chinese Overseas Publishing House.

Li, X. (2013, February 5). A Briefing Analysis of the Number of Overseas Chinese in Africa.

McNamee, T., Mills, G., Manoeli, S., Mulaudzi, M., Doran, S., & Chen, E. (2012/ 2013). Africa in Their Words: A Study of Chinese Traders in South Africa, Lesotho, Botswana, Zambia and Angola. Discussion Paper, The Brenthurst Foundation.

Park, Y. J. (2009). A Matter of Honour: Being Chinese in South Africa. Lanham: Lexington Books.

(SCOCRA) Schools for Cadres Regarding Overseas Chinese Affairs of Overseas Chinese Affairs Office of the State Council. (2005). Overview of Overseas Chinese. Beijing: Jiuzhou Press.

Tandon, M. O. (1992). The Chinese in Zimbabwe. Paper for the World Chinese Conference, Mauritius.

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