Friday, August 31, 2018

China’s ‘New Weapon’ Against Russia – Chinese Men Marrying Russian Women

Paul Goble

            Staunton, August 30 – China’s one child policy, now overturned, means that there is a serious gender imbalance between men and women in the prime childbearing age groups and that more than 30 million Chinese men are now forced to live as bachelors. Given the centrality of family in Chinese culture, many of them are seeking wives abroad.

            In the past, they typically pursued Europeans and Americans; more recently, they have been marrying Russians. That pattern is especially true among less well-off Chinese who can’t afford to travel to the Wes but can easily make the trip north into Siberia and the Russian Far East (

            Many Russian women in these regions welcome the appearance of the Chinese suitors because in those parts of the country, there is a gender imbalance of the opposite kind: there are more women than men. And according to Ilya Polonsky, Russian women are more prepared to adapt to the demands of Chinese men than Chinese women are. 

What is concerning, the Russian commentator continues, is that there are now numerous Russian-Chinese marriage agencies promoting such unions.  Chinese men are willing to invest “major sums for acquaintances with Russian women,” and Russian women are led to believe that the Chinese are wealthy and that they will thus have a rich life.

“But this is not just business,” Polonsky says. “It is no secret that China is gradually expanding in the Far East and that historically Beijing considers these lands [now within Russian borders] as part of its sphere of influence.”  And China considers that it can expand into Russia without fighting by using intermarriage and creating an ethnically mixed population.

These marriages are occurring not only among the better off segments of the population, he continues. There are an increasing number among the working class. “The disciplined and little drinking workers from China who work in the Far East also enjoy demand from women and girls in local settlements and small cities.”

“And this is completely understandable – [the Chinese men] love to work, value family comforts and are less inclined to abuse alcohol and asocial behavior. As a result, everyone involved gets something – the Chinese a wife, the women a non-drinking husband, and China a gradual expansion into neighboring territory and a solution to the problem of ‘extra men.’” 

Only one question remains, Polonsky concludes: “Is this good for Russia?”

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