Cross-Cultural Business Negotiations

By Donald W. Hendon; Rebecca Angeles Hendon et al. | Go to book overview

14
Country Study: Hong Kong/China

WHAT THE HONG KONG CHINESE ARE LIKE

Hong Kong has a population of around six million people, ninety-eight percent of whom are Chinese. About half of the Chinese were born in Hong Kong, and the other half migrated from various parts of mainland China such as Canton, Sze Yap, Chiu Chow, Shanghai, and Hakka. The majority of the immigrants come from Kwangtung. This accounts for the strong Cantonese influence among these migrants. The early Cantonese migrants were mostly peasants, small traders, or artisans; recent migrants are much better educated. The remaining two percent of the population consists mostly of non-Chinese people from Britain, India, the United States, Australia, Portugal, Pakistan, Philippines, Singapore, Canada, Japan, Indonesia, and Germany. The people's religious activities are strongly influenced by Buddhism, Taoism, and ancestor worship. A minority follow Muslim, Hindu, Sikh, and Christian beliefs. The increasing number of foreign companies locating in Hong Kong has created a multicultural society that is the basis of the country's modern, cosmopolitan ambience. Cantonese Chinese and English are the main languages, but there is increasing interest in learning Mandarin because it's the main dialect spoken in mainland China. China has opened up her lines for international business through Hong Kong.

The life of the traditional Chinese is centered around the patriarchal family, which is headed by the father, or by the grandfather, if he is still alive. His authority is absolute over all family members. The family is still seen as both the means of economic

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