Golden Visas and everyday citizenship: views of the new Chinese migration in Portugal

Santos, Tânia R.; Castro, Paula and Andreouli, Eleni (2023). Golden Visas and everyday citizenship: views of the new Chinese migration in Portugal. Ethnic and Racial Studies, 46(10) pp. 2067–2088.



The residency-by-investment programmes – or Golden Visas – are an example of a neoliberal legal innovation where residency is granted through investment with only minimal additional residency requirements. This paper explores how the different conditions of foreign residency, that create groups of non-national residents with different rights, are made sense of by Chinese investment residents (n = 11) and Chinese key-informants developing activities related with them (n = 14). Particularly, we explored how this programme is understood in everyday discourse and how it reinforces the construction of a neoliberal configuration of citizenship. Analysis shows that a new Chinese migration is being presented by emphasizing the differences between old (seen as “forced”) migrant mobilities and new forms of mobility, a distinction grounded in assumptions of linear globalization and development. We discuss the citizenship inequalities this programme is promoting, both in practice and in the representations of an ideal or “good” mobility in contemporary globalized societies.

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