China’s Top Emigrant City, Taishan

Comrade Shi explores a very important city in Guangdong Province. It’s called Taishan (Toisan) 台山. Dubbed 全国第一桥乡, Taishan is famous for its emigrants. About 1.6 million of its former residents are now living overseas.

The streets here remind me of my childhood days in Singapore. Curiously, it does not seem very prosperous in spite of the contributions from its former residents. The ladies of the night were blatantly operating in the daytime.

Recently, I met a few people from Guangdong doing menial jobs in Singapore. I was surprised, thinking that people from 北上广wouldn’t need to come here to for such low paying jobs. They replied that most cities in Guangdong are actually not that prosperous. There are huge numbers of jobless people there now.

The second video is a little less happening than the first, but it also features Taishan and it shows a stark contrast with the prosperous China that we all thought we knew. Most of the buildings are in utter disrepair. Some are even crumbling and look more like a town in Myanmar than in the China we see in the official state media.