Diaspora Groups in Cambodia
The term diaspora refers to people who live outside their mother country. Globalization has made it easy for people to migrate to other countries in search of jobs, education, skills and other resources required for livelihood. Though far away from home, most migrants have connections with their mother country. They, therefore, take part in their countries’ development through social, economic and psychological links. They are viewed by many as potential citizens of their homeland. Some capital obtained in the country people currently live in goes to their motherland and is used as an important resource in economic growth and development.
Cambodia, a country located in East Asia, is one of the world’s most populated countries. Many entrepreneurs from Cambodia have migrated to the USA, France, Russia and other developed states. There are various ways in which the Diasporas from Cambodia fill the voids and weaknesses in their mother country.
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Most of the Diasporas have investment interests in their homeland. As a result, they start businesses in form of manufacturing companies. They produce goods and services for domestic use as well as for export purposes. The above activities contribute to a favorable GDP in such countries and stimulate their economic development. A research termed ‘The African Market Diaspora’ shows an increased interest by the Diasporas to broaden their participation in the economies of their homeland as well as new ventures generation (Kwok, 2006). Diaspora businessmen also invest in the existing projects in their country of origin. They conduct these actions, for instance, through direct purchase of equities from developing companies. They invest equity funds in the flourishing companies in their original countries. Such manipulations work to their advantage and make them succeed faster.
Most of the diaspora members understand the obstacles bedeviling investment in their country. In most government institutions, issues of poor leadership, corruption, bureaucracy and red tape among others occur frequently The participants of ADM are optimistic that they have an upper hand over the non-diaspora investing in their motherland. They are familiar with investment chances, consumer tastes, languages, beliefs, values and attitudes of their people.
The Cambodian Diaspora works hard to improve the living standards for their people, including relatives and friends. Ensuring financial security for fellow Cambodians is their sole responsibility. Therefore, they help in poverty alleviation and hunger elimination. The families usually harbor a lot of expectations for those living abroad. Those residing in the diaspora also normally want to identify with their people back at home.
The Diasporas help in creation of employment in their original country. They mainly do this through investments and businesses that they establish. As a result, these actions reduce the number of the jobless and lighten the Cambodian government’s burden. They also aim to reduce dependence of their families on the remittances as indicated by the ADM participants. Such people are driven by motivation to create jobs as well as income for their people.
Individuals who invest in Cambodia are highly respected, which causes emotional and social status motivations upon the diasporas to help their former fellow citizens. They gain a feeling of self-esteem, pride and accomplishment. Those who do not help the community may lose their social status. Some individuals are led by their political motivations. They aim to gain political favors, access and influence. Others want to mitigate on legal issues that may affect their families. They believe that investment in the country of origin would deliver them such benefits.
Diaspora entrepreneurs are seen as agents of change for the institutions in the mother country. Institutional weaknesses in Cambodia, unfavorable business environmental, for instance, hinder economic investment and forces people to migrate to more developed countries. Diasporas, on the other hand, try to bring back new norms, skills, knowledge and organizations to their own country. Such alterations cause behavioral change in the institutions in the country of origin. By increasing the number of local firms in their homeland, Cambodian diaspora entrepreneurs compel the state to improve business environment and attention of international media. Migrants also leverage advancement in the transport and communication sector, which makes it easy to connect with their original country (Buckley, 2002). In addition, their activities create social fields that link the settlement country with homeland. Some entrepreneurs may periodically return back home for short time periods.
Cambodian Diaspora entrepreneurs introduce unique marketing and operational knowledge as well as create good transnational links. That is important for sealing institutional voids in their countries. They may suggest improved methods and offer solutions in the running and management of such investigations, which will help to turn around and enhance their performance greatly.
Furthermore, institutional voids negatively impact company performance and operations as well as international businesses. Most challenges affecting developing countries emanate from institutional weaknesses (Dai, 2009). Cambodian Diaspora entrepreneurs create subsidiaries for the institutions and companies in their homeland. Some may establish retail chains, tourism-oriented enterprises, restaurants and consultancy companies.
In conclusion, Cambodian Diasporas gets exposed to many opportunities and encounters during their venture in their settlement country. Such state of affairs motivates them to participate in economic empowerment of the people in their original country. They may start lobby or advocacy groups, participate in philanthropic activities and raise funds in Cambodia. They sell their country to the developed state and besiege it to help in development projects it their original country. Globalization provides Diasporas with useful information regarding their country of origin. They may read the available newsletters and magazines with information about their motherland.
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