Trade with China goes both ways. Photo: Diario de Yucatán

A university researcher predicts a “new wave” of Chinese in Yucatán, and it will be quite unlike the 19th-century arrival of Asian laborers.

It’s a wave of business, investment and trade, said Luis Ramírez Carrillo, of UADY.

Already, Yucatán and China have an ongoing and fairly equitable exchange of goods.

In an analysis of the trade balance between Yucatan and China, Ramírez Carrillo said that Yucatan exports to China amount to more than US$94 million a year, while Chinese imports in Yucatán total US$90.3 million, according ProMéxico.

What does Yucatán sell in China? According to the state Ministry of Economic Development, the Peninsula sends furniture, industrial machines and equipment, plastics, processed foods, beverages and medical supplies, among other goods.

China sends us textiles and clothing, machinery, furniture, medical, surgical, optical and photography equipment, plastics, food and jewelry.

Dr. Ramírez Carrillo points out that the Chinese population has increased rapidly since 2001. The Population Census published in 2010, but with data from 2009, showed that throughout Mexico there were 10,247 Chinese residents, but they did not appear in significant numbers in Yucatan.

From 2012 to 2016, the Chinese population in Yucatán grew from 382 to more than 1,000 people, which makes this community the third-largest group of foreigners, as well as the fastest-growing group.

The 21st-century wave of Chinese arrivals in Yucatán is mainly between 35 and 45 years old, although a substantial portion are 25 to 29 and between 50 and 54; 56.3 percent are men.

They come to work as investors, executives, managers and workers, according to data collected by the researcher.

Many have brought culinary skills to Yucatán, as they have all over the world. The state has just over 140 Chinese restaurants.

Others come to study, and to a lesser extent to find romance and start a family, said Ramírez Carrillo.

Source: Diario de Yucatán