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Chinese Diaspora in South East Asia Becoming a "Virtual Nation"

Noviscape asserts that "increasing sophistication of linkages among Chinese diaspora across the region, at political, cultural as well as commercial levels, leading to an identifiable emergent community."

"The diaspora’s economic power, citizenship and ethnic solidarity contribute increasingly to the rise of a new paradigm of the ‘Virtual nation’ vis-à-vis the ‘Nation-state’."

The newsletter claims that, despite it's emergent creation, it is now willfully excercising power:

"As the key to Southeast Asia’s future growth and development, Southeast Asia’s Chinese diaspora is increasingly flexing its economic power; the patterns of money flow generated will provide a signature for the next wave of economic globalisation in the region."

This diaspora is proportionately largest in Singapore, it has "the highest concentration of ethnic Chinese [3 million] or 75% of its population."

Novispace posits that the power of this "virtual nation" may be held in check by concerns of disproportionate influence (but it doesn't say exactly who this concern is stemming from).

"Concerns over political influence over the Chinese diaspora by the Chinese government"

"Rising concern over signals of Chinese ambitions to hegemony, and especially, a rising suspicion over its intentions in regard to control over natural resources worldwide, not only in Asia itself."

Implications from Noviscape:

The newsletter asserts that "the role of geography is gradually been ousted from its role as the key identifier of a nation."

It cites a 1999 quote from Stephen Krasner “…the characteristics that are associated with sovereignty – territory, autonomy, recognition, and control – do not provide an accurate description of the actual practices that have characterized many entities that have been conventionally viewed as sovereign states”.

The newsletter chalks some of this up to market forces:

"Increasing globalization is reconstituting the economic landscape, and erodes the concept of sovereignty as an economic and political entity, and countries / national governments have diminishing control over actual practice, at least in the area of trade, compared to a highly globalized corporate sector."

The newsletter also implies that people are becoming aware of this contradiction:

"Support for the concept of ‘nation state’ is steadily declining. Even in Singapore, murmurs of political discontent are emerging from the middle classes- unthinkable just a few years ago."

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Sources:

Noviscape_July2011 page 5, 6, 7:
http://newsletters.clearsignals.org/Noviscape_July2011.pdf#page=5