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2011–2012

ERSTE Foundation Fellowship for Social Research Should we stay or should we go? Migration and its effects on demographic and economic development in Central Eastern Europe

Immigration Processes in Lithuania: Social Developments of Chinese and Turkish Immigrant Groups Karolis Žibas


Immigration Processes in Lithuania: Social Developments of Chinese and Turkish Immigrant Groups Project paper

ERSTE Foundation Social Research Fellowship “Migration and its effects on demographic and economic development in CEE”

Karolis Žibas Junior researcher / PhD student Lithuanian Social Research Centre, Institute for Ethnic Studies A. Goštauto str. 11, LT-01108, Vilnius, Lithuania Phone: +370 5 272 2063, fax: +370 5 275 4896 E-mail: karolis@ces.lt/Web: http://www.ces.lt

Vilnius 2011


Table of contents

Summary

3

Lithuania as a part of global migration system: some insights

3

Chinese and Turks in the general context of immigration flows

7

Theoretical framework and research methodology

16

Social developments of Chinese and Turkish immigrant groups: case studies

22

Conclusions

49

References

55

Annexes

57

2


Summary 1

This paper is based on qualitative research, which analyses the dynamics of the immigration processes in Lithuania and discloses the social developments of so-called ‘new immigrant’ groups – particularly those from China and Turkey. The focus of this paper is on the analysis and comparison of the current social situation of Chinese and Turkish immigrants in Lithuania. The results of the research provide the most up-todate empirical data available on the peculiarities of Chinese and Turkish immigration to Lithuania, including the social developments and forms of social organisation of immigrant groups; their internal and external social resources, and their integration and immigration experiences on an individual and group level.

Lithuania as a part of the global migration system: some insights The enlargement of the European Union (EU) in 2004 and 2007 led to a geopolitical shift in Europe that could be regarded as the most significant influence on the mobility of populations since the Second World War. The enlargement has moved the border of the EU eastwards with Belarus, Moldova and Ukraine becoming new neighbours to the EU. On the one hand, the borders between new EU member states and their non-EU neighbours have resulted in newly shaped migration flows; on the other hand, the process of EU enlargement together with the implementation of the Schengen Agreement in late 2007 stimulated new migration patterns and subsequently, new migration systems.2 While previously, the destination countries for migrants were mainly ‘old’ EU member states, after 2004 and 2007, ‘new’ member states have become not only countries of origin or transit, but also countries of destination for migrants from different parts of the world: from those countries nearby (Ukraine, Belarus) to those far away (China, Turkey). At the same time, when non-EU countries have become EU member states, borders have moved, changing the position both of ‘new’ member states and their neighbours in the context of migration management. Countries of emigration experienced the process of immigration and the socio-political challenges related to migrant integration simultaneously while at the same time, the management of immigration flows and the implementation of migrant integration programmes were critically re-examined in many Western European countries. Consequently, migration processes have become more complex and diverse in

1

Project “Immigration Processes in Lithuania: Social Developments of Chinese and Turkish Immigrant Groups”. ERSTE Foundation Social Research Fellowship: “Generations in Dialogue”, “Migration and its Effects on Demographic and Economic Development in CEE”. 2 The migration system (as a process) is explained by migration system theory. This theory allows stable international migration systems to be identified. According to Massey et al. (1993: 454), a migration system is a stable (but not fixed) structure of migration flows over time and space, but varies across countries. The processes of emergence of new migration systems after the enlargement of the EU (2004) are elaborated by Adrian Favell (2006, 2008).

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nature. A new migration system has emerged in the wake of the increase of attractiveness of Central and Eastern European (CEE) countries for immigrants to the EU. Together with the intensification of migration flows in the eastern part of the EU, the implementation of migrant integration and immigration policies, and the exploration of migration phenomena are becoming particularly important issues for states new to immigration and contemporary multicultural societies to address. The analysis of social, economic, political, demographic and historical causes and the consequences of migration are gradually becoming a fundamental part of every research discipline in CEE). After EU enlargement (2004, 2007), migration flows (both internal and external) have become phenomena which are difficult to analyse, monitor, and forecast. This is due to their scale; their impact on individual and/or collective life experiences in the ‘sending’ and ‘receiving’ societies; the increase in transnational families; and finally it is due to the social, demographic and economic environment of the countries within the global migration network. Large and complex migration flows together with migrant integration processes in the twenty-first century encouraged researchers to consider the migration process in the EU as a microcosm of contemporary society rather than as a unique process stimulated by social,

political

and

economic

circumstances

only.

Undoubtedly,

technological

developments, global environmental issues, economic and political instability and the mobility of populations are factors which interconnect and may be causative. Therefore, migration as a process becomes an indicator of rapid changes of contemporary society, while as a research object it is an instrument, which helps to analyse the social, political and economic challenges, which are posed by modernity on the one hand, and political or economic instability on the other hand. In this ‘new context’ of international migration, new EU member states such as Lithuania, Latvia, Poland and other CEE countries, assume a specific role. These countries are in a beneficial position as they can learn from the practices both good and bad of their fellow EU member states in the implementation of immigration, migrant integration and anti-discrimination policies. Moreover, there is a strong tradition of migration research in the EU, which led to a trend of establishing migration studies institutes within EU countries. After EU enlargement, the field of migration studies has broadened, moving from the study of integration processes within the ‘old’ EU member states only to also including the migration systems of the eastern part of the EU. Yet, structural factors (e.g. emigration and demographic decline, changes in the structure of the labour market, rapid political and economic changes within and outside the EU, etc.) show 4


that countries in the eastern part of the EU will become ‘players’ in attracting migrants from so-called ‘third countries’. It means that a comprehensive analysis of migration processes in the countries observed could result in the extension and deepening of the theoretical and empirical perception of migration, the exploration of the complexity of international migration within and outside of CEE and finally, the creation of the theoretical and empirical background for the establishment of well-structured migration studies in countries where immigration research is in its infancy. New migration systems demand a new approach to migration research as well as innovative and conceptual strategies for immigration policies, which (due to different historical and political background and experiences in immigration management) cannot be transposed directly from countries with a longer history of immigration. With regards to the socio-political challenges posed by international migration, Lithuania (like other ‘new’ EU member states in the eastern part of the EU) is not an exception. While discussing the position of Lithuania as a global player in international migration processes, some important factors were identified: (1) the restoration of its independence in 1990, (2) the enlargement of the EU in 2004 and finally, (3) the implementation of the Schengen Agreement in late 2007. Certainly, these changes had and still have a broader context, extending far beyond the subject of international migration. However, changes observed highlighted new patterns of international migration such as new migration systems between CEE and Western European countries. Later on, new migration trends emerged within CEE. After independence was restored in 1991, Lithuania experienced significant political and socioeconomic changes. It has led to specific patterns of international migration: after 1991, large scale emigration of Lithuanian citizens to the western part of the EU stimulated demographic challenges (e.g. population decline) together with the structural changes in the Lithuanian labour market. After Lithuania joined the EU in 2004, economic emigration became more visible and this stimulated discussion on the socio-economic consequences of mass emigration.3 Together with the trend of an increase in economic emigration, which has prevailed in Lithuania for many years, new migration patterns were observed: demographic

challenges

together

with

labour

shortages

triggered

immigration

predominantly from the CIS, but also from more distant parts of the world (China and Turkey), immigrants of which are currently labelled as ‘third-country nationals’ within the EU.

3

Since Lithuania restored its independence in 1991, migration net has remained negative to the present day.

5


The way in which immigration has occurred in countries such as Lithuania and Latvia shows that immigration processes in the Baltic States began 20 years ago.4 Therefore, due to the limited experience of immigration in these countries, migration research becomes especially relevant as researchers (for example, in Baltic States) can analyse the processes of immigration and migrant integration from the beginning. It means that research may include relevant indicators of analysis such as the origin of migration in the ‘sending’ country (the environment where the decision to migrate was made); ‘the way of migration’ (countries of origin, transit and destination); and finally, the preconditions for the emergence of migrant communities. These indicators allow migration to be analysed and monitored from its roots (or from the migration preconditions). This type of analysis cannot be implemented in countries with a longer history of immigration, where the continuity (integration processes, issues related to generations of immigrants, etc.) of immigration is explored. Before the restoration of independence in 1991, the Chinese and Turks were those (potential) immigrant groups, which unlike the largest immigrant groups in Lithuania (Ukrainians, Belarussians and Russians) had no historic, economic and social ties to the State or society. At the present time, after 20 years of so-called ‘new immigration’, the discussion could be framed as focusing on the first generation of Chinese and Turkish immigrants to Lithuania and, to a certain extent, on the social (educational) positions of their children. Though, the level of immigration in Lithuania is minor, migration experiences in the western part of the EU evidence a great potential for Chinese and Turkish migration. Moreover, during the revival of the Lithuanian economy in 2007–2008, an increase in immigrants (both of migrant workers and entrepreneurs) from China and Turkey was observed. Currently, despite the small number of Chinese and Turkish immigrants in Lithuania, the mobility of the immigrant groups analysed could be characterised as heterogeneous (from migrant workers to entrepreneurs, and from the migration of families to migration for study). It shows, that both Chinese and Turkish immigration is triggered by different factors: from individual experiences (micro level) and social networks (meso level) to economic conditions and immigration policies (macro level). Considering the different types of immigration, the analysis of the Chinese and Turkish immigration processes focuses on the developmental shift in the legal, social and economic status of the immigrant groups analysed; and on collective and/or individual immigration and integration experiences, which are affected both by external and/or internal social networks within and/or outside of an immigrant group. All these (above4

Or was ‘reopened’.

6


mentioned) questions push the analysis forward – towards a discussion about the potential of Chinese and Turkish immigration to Lithuania: the possibility that a new migration system will emerge (unlikely) on the one hand and a new migration trend will be more intensive (likely) on the other hand. Chinese and Turks in the general context of immigration flows In the light of Lithuania’s accession to the EU (2004) and the implementation of the Schengen Agreement (2007), new immigration trends in Lithuania could be observed: immigration flows had changed not only quantitatively, but they also became more diverse and complex (i.e. had changed in terms of grounds of arrival and countries of origin). Recently (especially after 2004), an increase in the number of immigrants from Turkey and China was identified. Following Belarussians and Ukrainians (who had a longer history of immigration and more sustained historical and familial ties with Lithuania and its society), the Chinese and Turks became the largest immigrant groups in Lithuania (though, comparing these groups with the number of Belarussians and Ukrainians, they remained at a low level).5 As Chinese and Turkish immigrants became visible in the public discourse, it stimulated discussion on future challenges related to immigration management and migrant integration policies (as well as on political responses to the processes analysed).6 Immigration flows to Lithuania started to increase from 2000 with the peak occurring after EU enlargement in 2004 and implementation of the Schengen Agreement in late 2007. Consequently, labour immigration became significant, while the flows of asylum seekers remained insignificant and stable. Increase of immigration stimulated a political response while at the same time, trends of immigration (especially labour-related immigration) changed due to the current global economic crisis: after 2008 (when immigration was at its peak), immigration (both labour and total) decreased (see chart 1 below). In the relation to decrease of immigration, all initiatives regarding immigration management and migrant integration policies ceased (with the exception of foreigners granted refugee status or subsidiary protection). However, the newest statistical data for the first half of 2011 shows that immigration is on the increase again: the number of work 5

Due to current global economic changes, immigration flow to Lithuania has decreased (including Chinese and Turks). However, immigration experience from 2004 to 2008 shows that the growth in the economy may trigger considerable immigration processes (see chart 1). 6 For example: Balsas.lt, 21.11.2007; Vz.lt, 2008.11.26; Alfa.lt, 2008.05.10; 15min.lt, 14.08.2008; Ve.lt., 06.04.2009; Vilniaus.diena.lt, 31.05.2008; Vilniaus.diena.lt., 14.06.2008; Lrytas.lt, 31.07.2008; 15min.lt, 18.08.2008; Delfi.lt., 11.11.2009; Delfi.lt., 17.07.2010; Diena.lt., 11.04.2008.

7


permits issued to foreigners has increased slightly and a peak in immigration (due to Lithuanian returnees) was observed (see chart 1 below). The annual dynamics of foreign immigration and the number of foreigners residing in Lithuania has, however, remained insignificant.7 Chart 1. Immigration in Lithuania 1997–2011

Source: prepared by author according to statistical data from Lithuania Labour Exchange, Statistics Lithuania and the Migration Department. * Since 2001, foreigners who live in Lithuania for one year or longer are subsumed under definition of immigrant. ** January–September. Note: the majority of immigrants are Lithuanian returnees (the average would be about 70 % from total annual immigration). Therefore, the annual immigration level of foreigners is minor.

As this paper focuses on the social developments of Chinese and Turkish immigrant groups, one of its aims is to look at the research object on a local level (distribution of immigrants in municipalities) by disclosing detailed statistical trends, which are related specifically to Chinese and Turkish immigration to Lithuania: legal status (grounds of arrival and type of residence permit), and social and demographical characteristics (gender and age). As it is important to look at the general structure of immigration, particular attention is paid to Chinese and Turkish immigration in the general context of immigration flows. There are at least four sources of immigration statistics for Lithuania: Lithuania Labour Exchange (issuance or work permits for foreigners),8 Statistics Lithuania (annual immigration volume) and the Migration Department (issuance of residence permits). The statistical data from the additional source – the Residents’ Register Service – could be 7

In 2010 (as of the beginning of the year), 32,500 foreigners were residing in Lithuania (0.98% of the total population; down by 400 on 2009’s figure). In 2011, this figure was 29,600 (0.91% of the total population). 8 Labour immigration is not the object of this paper.

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considered as the most explicit9 as it shows the number of foreigners residing in Lithuanian municipalities (according to the declaration of place of living) rather than an annual immigration volume or the number of documents issued (which shows main trends and does not reflect the real extent of immigration and the share of immigrants in the total population). However, all the above-mentioned data sources should be considered with reservation as quantitative and qualitative methodologies provide a broader perspective on the real immigration volume (see explanation below). According to data provided by Statistics Lithuania,10 in 2009, 59 Turks and 26 Chinese immigrated to Lithuania; compared with 22 Turks and 15 Chinese in 201011 (the majority of the Chinese and Turks were between 20 and 40 years of age). The dynamics of immigration of the groups analysed correspond to the total immigration of foreigners, which decreased from 1,666 in 2009 to 1,060 in 2010.12 Trends in immigration differ when viewed by gender: in the case of Turkish immigration, the percentage of male immigrants has decreased from 95% in 2009, compared with 82% in 2010. With regards to Chinese immigration, the gender aspect is not as noticeable as in the case of Turkish immigration: 69% of the Chinese immigrants in 2009 were men compared with 80% in 2010.13 Gender aspect with regard to total immigration is not as significant as in the case of either immigrant group: 62% of total immigrants in 2009 were men compared with 57% in 2010 (see chart 2).

9

Not available publicly. Statistical data was received following official communication with Statistics Lithuania. 11 Since 2009, annual immigration flows have started to decrease. However, issuance (and extension) of residence permits shows opposite trends: with regards to total immigration and immigration of the groups analysed, the number of issued and extended residence permits increased. For example, in the case of the Chinese, this increased from 8 in 2004 to 114 in 2011 (entrepreneurship); while in the case of the Turks, from 1 in 2004 to 98 in 2010 (family reunion) (see chart 2). Here, the emphasis should be given to different types of data provided by Lithuanian Statistics (annual immigration volumes) and the Migration Department (annual immigration and those who are applying for extension of residence permit). 12 The data of immigration in 2011 by citizenship is not available. However, recent immigration trends show that the majority of immigrants are Lithuanians returnees. 13 The comparison of gender aspect in 2010 should be considered with reservation due to the small number of Chinese and Turkish immigrants. 10

9


Chart 2. Annual immigration volumes of Chinese and Turks in 2009 and 2010: gender aspect

Source: prepared by author according to statistical data from Statistics Lithuania.

Gender aspect in Chinese and Turkish immigration could be explained by research findings and grounds for arrival (or initial legal status in Lithuania). The data provided by the Migration Department14 shows that the majority of Chinese immigrants arrive as entrepreneurs. With regards to the issuance of residence permits under the grounds of legal activities (entrepreneurship), the Chinese are the third biggest immigrant group (after Russians and Belarussians); while the Turks (as the research showed mainly Turkish men) are granted residence permits as family members. With regard to the issuance of residence permits under the grounds of family reunion, the Turks are the fifth biggest immigrant group (after Russians, Belarussians, Ukrainians, Americans and Israelis). Although the annual immigration (both total and immigrant groups) from 2009 to 2010 decreased, the issuance and extension of residence permits shows that the potential for immigration and/or the intention to remain in Lithuania is strong (see chart 3). Together with entrepreneurship and family reunion, the immigration of students is also prevalent. According to research findings, Chinese and Turkish student immigration has a strong potential for permanent residence. In the case of the Chinese immigration, the majority of entrepreneurs in Klaipeda arrived in Lithuania as students 10 (or more) years ago; while in the case of Turkish immigration, present managers and directors (as there are few of them) of Turkish organisations arrived in Lithuania initially as Turkish immigrants (students) after 1991 (see: Social developments of Chinese and Turkish immigrant groups: case studies).

14

Statistical data was received after official communication with the Migration Department.

10


Chart 3. Issuance and extension of residence permits for Chinese and Turks 2004–2011

Source: prepared by the author according to statistical data from the Migration Department * January – September

However, according to research findings, the majority of Chinese and Turkish immigrants are working as entrepreneurs (or, at least, associating their lives in Lithuania with entrepreneurship). It shows that the legal status of immigrants (Turks and, to a certain extent, Chinese) does not reflect their real social and economic positions in Lithuania. Data provided by Statistics Lithuania and the Migration Department shows annual immigration volumes and immigration potential, but does not reflect the number of immigrants, who are living (temporarily or permanently) in Lithuanian municipalities. Data from the Residents’ Register Service15 shows that in 2009, 28,556 foreigners were residing in Lithuania, compared with 26,574 in 2011.16 According to the latest data (05 September 2011), 286 Chinese and 179 Turks were residing in Lithuania, compared with 319 and 334 respectively in 2009 (see map 1 and map 2). A significant decrease in Turkish immigrants could be explained by the general decrease in labour-related immigration, which, in 2009, was concentrated in the Vilnius region (according to research findings, the majority of Turkish immigrants were working in the City of Vilnius).

15

Statistical data was received after official communication with the Residents’ Register Service. Statistical data registered on 29 September 2009. 16 Statistical data was received after official communication with the Residents’ Register Service. Statistical data registered on 05 September 2011.

11


Map 1. Chinese and Turkish immigrants in Lithuania: distribution in municipalities (29 September 2009)

Source: prepared by author according to statistical data received from the Residents’ Register Service.

Map 2. Chinese and Turkish immigrants in Lithuania: distribution in municipalities (05 September 2011)

Source: prepared by author according to statistical data received from the Residents’ Register Service.

12


As in the case of annual immigration volumes, deeper analysis of immigration structure (number of foreigners with different types of residence permits) shows that the gender aspect of Chinese and Turkish immigration and integration processes is becoming important. In 2011, 92% of Turks in Lithuania were men, compared with 74% of Chinese (see chart 4). Here, the emphasis should be on grounds of arrival as it has significant impact on the integration of Chinese and Turks in Lithuania. In distinct ways for both cases, it brings different integration scenarios to the fore. According to research findings, Turkish immigrants arrive in an environment (family migration) where the integration process (obstacles) does not have a crucial impact, while Chinese are facing more complex integration obstacles. However, there are different strategies on individual, family and group levels (see: Social developments of Chinese and Turkish immigrant groups: case studies). Chart 4. Immigration structure by gender in 2009 and 2011

Source: prepared by author according to statistical data from the Residents’ Register Service

Looking at the distribution of Chinese and Turkish immigrants in the general context of foreigners (from non-EU and European Free Trade Association (or EFTA states) residing in Lithuania, some specific trends can be observed. In both cases (immigrant groups analysed and general structure of immigration), the main cities (Vilnius, Kaunas and Klaipeda) could be considered as the main immigration centres in Lithuania. Foreigners from non-EU and EFTA countries, including Chinese and Turkish, who reside in the three largest Lithuanian cities, constitute 56% of the total number of foreigners; while Chinese and Turkish immigrants in these cities constitute 83% and 79% respectively from the total number of Chinese and Turkish immigrants in Lithuania as a whole (see map 2 and chart 5).

13


Chart 5. Main cities of immigration: concentration of Chinese and Turkish immigrants in Lithuanian cities (2011)

Source: prepared by author according to statistical data received from the Residents' Register Service.

Analysing the concentration of the Chinese and Turkish immigrants in Lithuanian municipalities (which is more significant compared with the general concentration of foreigners) from the perspective of macro, micro and meso levels, different explanations could be provided. In the case of Chinese immigration, the three biggest cities could be considered as immigration centres with the emphasis on the capital Vilnius (58% of Chinese immigrants to Lithuania reside in Vilnius). In the case of Turkish immigration, Vilnius is considered as the main immigration centre with 73% Turkish immigrants residing there (see chart 5). Together with an argument of macroeconomic circumstances (biggest cities maintain better possibilities for employment, housing, social services, etc., and are therefore more attractive to immigrants), results of the research show that trends of concentration of the immigrant groups analysed could be explained by different types of social ties: from the family and institutional networks of Turkish immigrants to the entrepreneurship and labour-related ties of Chinese immigrants (see: Social developments of Chinese and Turkish immigrant groups: case studies). On the one hand, Chinese and Turkish immigration to Lithuania is following general immigration trends; on the other hand, the concentration of immigrant groups analysed in Lithuanian municipalities shows that in the case of the Chinese, the three largest cities (Vilnius, Kaunas and Klaipeda), and in the case of Turkish, the largest (Vilnius), has a crucial impact on the patterns of immigration (which is not similar to general immigration trends). Moreover, considering network-based mobility, it shows the potential for Chinese and Turkish immigration, which is determined both by migration networks and macroeconomic conditions. The overall analysis of statistics with regard to immigration volumes and concentration of the Chinese and Turkish immigrants in Lithuania evidences both the complexity of 14


immigration and the challenges related to collection and analysis of statistical data. While different institutions provide different statistical data, none of the data provided corresponds to real extent of Chinese and Turkish immigration. This can be illustrated by research findings: according to the Residents’ Register Service, in 2011 (05 September 2011), 179 Turks were living in Lithuania, while at the same time a Turkish respondent (interview No. R-10, 09.08.2011, see annexes) indicated that he has at least 250 different phone numbers of compatriots who live in Vilnius.17 The different data provided (179 Turks in Lithuania officially versus 250 Turks in Vilnius unofficially) could be explained by internal migration within the EU, when Turkish immigrants are coming to Lithuania from other EU member states (as respondents indicated, from Sweden and Germany) without registering themselves in Lithuania as immigrants. In a parallel with the analysis of immigration dynamics, research findings showed that regardless of the data collected (legal grounds of arrival or legal status),18 Chinese and Turkish use different strategies to tackle the administrative issues related to immigration documents (i.e. restrictions on family reunification, the issuance of residence permits, justification of residence or application for residency, etc.).19 Moreover, a large part of those (especially Turkish men) who are coming as family members (family reunion as legal ground of arrival) are usually working as entrepreneurs in small- or medium-scale businesses. The trend of establishing family businesses is prevailing in both cases: in the Turkish case to a lesser extent, while in the case of the Chinese, it is more frequent. Summarising statistical data provided by different sources, the emphasis should be on the fact that the three largest cities in Lithuania (Vilnius, Kaunas and Klaipeda) are creating peculiarities in the structure of general immigration flow (citizenship, gender and legal status). In the case of Chinese and Turkish immigration, the main cities explored are playing crucial role, which is bigger than in the case of a general immigration structure. However, the statistical data analysed does not reflect the real legal position of the immigrant groups analysed as the research shows that the legal status of Chinese and Turkish immigrants in Lithuania is changing rapidly. Regardless of the above mention difficulties, statistical data from different sources provides a background to these immigrant groups by bringing an understanding of the extent of Chinese and Turkish immigration to Lithuania. Undoubtedly, the research

17

A Turkish entrepreneur who has six kebab shops in Vilnius and a broad network of co-operational ties with other Turkish immigrants from Vilnius and other cities. 18 Which is provided by Migration Department and the Residents' Register Service. 19 For example, by assigning companies between family members.

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sampling should be framed taking into account both official immigration data and unofficial estimations. Theoretical framework and research methodology The origins of contemporary human mobility in economic migration theories The research on international migration processes can be divided into macro-, micro-, and meso-level analysis (Faist 2000:31). Political, economic, cultural, demographical and ecological circumstances can be considered as indicators of macro-level analysis. Individual values and aspirations to improve (or maintain) the economic welfare and social status of immigrants are indicators of micro-level analysis, while collective social networks and ties that are created by migrants in their adopted country, their friends, families, mediators and potential migrants (in the country of destination/transit/origin) are indicators of meso-level analysis. In the last-mentioned case, the result of social ties and networks is a self-generating process of international migration, which is explained through social migration theories. In the light of macro-, micro-, and meso-level analysis, theories which seek to explain international migration have been identified. Briefly, these theories can be divided into economic and social migration theories. Economic theories explain the origin of international migration and emphasize push and pull factors that are determined by macroeconomic factors and individual decisions regarding mobility based on analysis of the costs and benefits of migration (Brettell and Hollifield 2000:51-56); while social theories explain the continuity of international migration and emphasise the importance of social networks. As the purpose of this paper is to look at Chinese and Turkish immigration processes from the perspective of macro-, micro- and meso-level analysis, a broader perspective on migration (which is disclosed by different migration theories) is essential. It allows for the construction of an extensive theoretical framework both for data collection and analysis. Neoclassical Economic Theory explains the phenomenon of migration by using push and pull factors. Analysing the origin of migration at the macro level, structural factors such as differences in labour force demand and supply in international markets, differences in regional or national socioeconomic development are incorporated. Micro-level analysis includes factors of individual mobility (Brettell ir Hollifield 2000:51-56) (in a broader sense, the environment where a decision upon migration is made). Contrary to Neoclassical 16


Economic Theory, the Theory of the New Economics of Migration considers different factors of migration. It takes into account conditions in the labour market as well as considering other structural aspects. It sees international migration as a household strategy decided upon in order to minimize family income risks (Stark 1991). DecisionMaking Models discusses different aspects that influence an immigrant’s decision upon migration. However, it remains in the framework of push and pull factors. Dual Labour Market Theory links the origin of migration to the structural factors of modern industrial economies. Migration is explained through the aspect of two labour markets: one being the ‘local’ population with high social and economic status; the other consisting of nonprestigious works where the majority of positions are shared among migrants (Massey et al. 1993). World Systems Theory critically re-examines migration phenomena: it sees migration as a natural consequence of economic globalisation, where the origin of migration is explained by human movement from the periphery to the centre (or from developing regions to the developed) (Brettell and Hollifield 2000). On the one hand, economic migration theories seek to explain the complexity of the beginning of the process; while on the other, they provide strong evidence for the importance of social aspects of migration (e.g. individually mobility based on analysis of the costs and benefits of migration). With the support of social migration theories, it helps to create a broad theoretical framework and to analyse social developments of the Chinese and Turkish immigrant groups in the context of migration theories. Migration as a social phenomenon: analysis of migrant integration processes in social migration theories Since 1970, research has emphasised the importance of migrant networking20 which shapes and sustains migration processes (e.g. Tilly and Brown 1967; Lomnitz 1977). Networks (or migrants’ interpersonal ties) connect migrants, former and potential migrants (including non-migrants) in the countries of origin and destination.21 They (networks) stimulate migration and reduce migration risks (Massey 1990). These arguments complement Migration Network and Migration Systems theories, which state that the migration process can sustain and generate itself by creating new configurations of human

20

Migrant networks play crucial role in migration processes. Cooperation based on social networks that are established by migrants is one of the main factors that makes migration more heterogeneous and complex. 21 Social migration theories emphasise the continuity rather than the origin of migration. The continuity of migration is evaluated considering collective immigration and integration experiences and institutions which were created by migrants.

17


movements. In migration studies, theories observed emphasise the stability of movement over time and space (Massey et al. 1993). Migration Network Theory includes interpersonal social ties between migrants and their families, friends and other actors, who participate in the process of international migration (e.g. intermediaries). The analysis of social networks allows us to explore the complexity of immigration processes in a synthesis of meso- (social networks) and micro- (individual mobility) levels. Migration Systems Theory explains the migration process using the aspect of interaction of micro- and macro- structures in particular territories (e.g. in the countries of destination and origin). Institutional actions (migration policies and institutions) could be considered as macro-, while factors of migrants’ individual mobility, their experiences and social networks are micro structures (Brettell and Hollifield 2000:51–56). Social theories allow us to identify stable international migration systems, which include both receiving and sending countries. The aspect of migrant social networking (e.g. Granovetter 1973, Lin 1999, 2005) covers a broad spectrum of immigration context such as the reason for migration and choice of destination countries (migratory behaviour or ‘migration culture’), formation of migrant communities (organisations, internal and/or external social ties), economic activities (especially in ethnic economies22), family migration (both as a follow-up of labour migration and the beginning of a migration network) and migrant integration. However, the main advantage of social migration theories lies both in the explanation of migration (as a self-generating social process) and migrant integration (as a follow-up of immigration) as these theories provide indicators for the analysis of migrant groups’ socioeconomic development processes in their countries of destination. On the one hand, migration networks might facilitate the decision upon migration (by providing information, assistance and services in the country of destination); on the other, it creates space for institutions and (groups of) individuals to perform different kind of activities: social assistance, employment, consultation, etc. (Massey et al. 1993). Such institutions and 22

Studies that focus on immigrants’ entrepreneurship (Granovetter 1985; Portes 1994) show that immigrant kinship networks are a key aspect in developing entrepreneurship in countries of destination. Ethnic economy emerges when immigrants maintain and stimulate a particular private economic sector (e.g. restaurants of specific food, spice shops, etc.) and where they are able to control ownership. Usually, ethnically-based economies are characterised by a significant proportion of co-ethnic human resources (or the labour force). These economies develop a particular physical presence in urban space (Light and Karageorgis 1994). Ethnically-based economies (or ethnic niches) emerge when an immigrant (or other) group is able to occupy a particular sector of economy (including employment). On the one hand, members of that group have privileged access to employment; on the other hand, people from ‘outside’ of the group have little chance of being employed (Portes 1998). In these cases, the opportunity of mobility (internal and external) is based on social networks within the migrant community. While explaining migration and migrant integration processes, ethnically-based economies have strong links to migrant networking, which is elaborated by Migration Network and Migration Systems theories.

18


services create an informal migrant integration infrastructure, which is stable and well known, especially for (potential) migrants. The existence and maintenance of social networks between individuals and/or institutions might increase international migration flow as it may increase the likelihood of migration by lowering integration costs. Summarising the theories, which aim to explain the phenomenon of international migration, it should be emphasised that due to the complexity of contemporary migration flows, the theories discussed above could not be applied individually as emphasis should be placed on the complex application of migration theories. In order to set the theoretical framework for the analysis of the social developments of Chinese and Turkish immigrant groups in Lithuania, the synthesis of social and economic theories could be considered as one of the options. Certainly, such synthesis should be enriched by empirical evidence. Theoretical framework, research problem and object While looking at the peculiarities of Chinese and Turkish immigration to Lithuania, a specific context is observed (see above: Chinese and Turks in the general context of immigration flows): immigrants from China and Turkey have a broad spectrum of immigration motives. They come to Lithuanian not only to work (labour immigration, which due to the global economic crisis is currently minor), but also as entrepreneurs (small- or medium-scale businesses, e.g. Chinese restaurants, kebab shops, textile shops, etc.); family members (family reunification); and students. The analysis of statistical data and immigration policy in Lithuania showed that immigration of family members, students and entrepreneurs is not regulated by immigration policy as strictly as those who coming to Lithuania to work. Moreover, the analysis of statistical data (especially motives of immigration in social terms and grounds of arrival in legal terms) add an argument that Chinese and Turkish immigration cannot be shaped by immigration policy and the economic situation only as it is strongly stimulated by social networks. Here, the emphasis should be given to the motives for migration. Considering the general context of immigration of Chinese and Turks it seems that the main motive for migration is economic (as the majority of the Chinese and Turks are entrepreneurs). However, the research findings showed that the most important decision upon migration is social as it is based on social (including family) networks and ethnic kinship. Despite this, individual strategies of mobility and integration were also observed (see: Social developments of Chinese and Turkish immigrant groups: case studies).

19


*** Summarising methodological preconditions of the analysis of social developments of the Chinese and Turkish immigrant groups in Lithuania by performing the analysis of immigration and migrant integration processes at macro micro and meso levels, the emphasis is given to the complete structure of immigration process.23 In order to identify a broad

context

of

immigration,

the

combination

of

macro-

(structure

or

integration/immigration policies), micro- (agency or individual factors of mobility), and meso-level (migration networks) analysis is applied. This combination indicates the complete image of immigration process, including policies, integration and the preconditions of immigrant communities to emerge (see scheme 1 below). Scheme 1. The analysis of social developments of Chinese and Turkish immigrant groups: the design of empirical research STRUCTURE Structural factors of migration (Immigration and integration policies, structural immigration and integration obstacles) Macro level

MIGRATION NETWORK The preconditions for development of migrant organisations, social networks, individual and/or collective immigration and integration experiences Meso level

AGENT Migrants (Individual factors of mobility and integration experiences) Micro level

Source: prepared by author

Social developments (as a key definition) are considered as a connecting link of preimmigration (including the environment where the decision to migrate was made) and postimmigration (including different paths of integration) situations. The concept of social development covers a broad spectrum of migration process: from individual and/or

23

In addition to application of migration theories it should be noted that together with structural factors (such as differences in socioeconomic developments, climate changes, regional conflicts, other) patterns of international migration are shaped by immigration and integration policies; while policies concerned are shaped by migrant organisations. Here, the distinction with regards to conception of integration should be made: analysing integration processes on the level of policy implementation, we should consider it (analysis) as a macro-level indicator; while analysing integration on the level of interaction of different immigrant groups (including social networking) – it should be considered as a micro- and/or meso-level indicator.

20


collective immigration and integration experiences to migrant organisations and a shift in the social and legal status of immigrants in the receiving society. However, the main aspect of the analysis is the migration network. Each of levels in empirical research design is equally important: structure (immigration and integration policies, macroeconomic factors), agent (migration motives) and migration network (different forms of social ties between migrants, non-migrants, institutions, organisations and intermediaries) stimulate migration process, shape migration patterns and enable integration processes and preconditions for immigrant communities to emerge. Both processes (immigration and integration) encompass the participation of actors in countries of origin, transit and destination. Therefore, integration processes in the country of destination can influence mobility factors on individual or group levels in the country of origin24 (conversely, mobility factors in the country of origin can influence the integration processes in the country of destination).25 This mutual effect is illustrated by the definition of migration network. The definition of migration network, which is discussed in the context of social migration theories, encompasses a broad spectrum of immigration: from the environment where the decision to migrate is made and the circumstances in which the destination country was chosen to different types of social ties, economic, social and political activities of immigrants, and finally, the formation of migration behaviour (‘culture’) in countries of origin, transit and destination (the way of migration).26 Though, migration network encompasses social and economic migration theories, the research design is divided into three levels (macro, micro and meso), which evidence broad immigration context. Research design, which encompasses the interplay of structure, migration network and agent, allows analysis of the peculiarities of the Chinese and Turkish immigrant groups’ social developments in the framework of migration theories. On the one hand, it enables a broad field of analysis to be disclosed; on the other, it explains the interplay between different levels of analysis. For instance, how migration network (which encompasses both internal and external social ties) is influencing a migrant’s destination country choice, later on (in the case of the emergence of stable migration trends) general migration behaviour is 24

In the case where the decision to migrate is determined by an informal migrant integration infrastructure. In a case, when due to permanent and stable migration flows, a migration network emerges, which encompasses migrant organisations, NGOs, individuals, intermediaries, other. These factors create informal migrant integration infrastructure. 26 The complexity of migration way could be illustrated by the Chinese labour immigration to Lithuania. For example, results of the research showed, that part of the Chinese immigrants who had been living in Lithuania (at least in 2009 and 2010), received their residence permits in other EU countries of the EU (e.g., Hungary). In this case, the immigration process becomes more complex and diverse, and, as Granovetter (1985) and Portes (1994; 1998) both state it is strongly characterised by social networks (in this case, not only between individuals but also between different institutions and companies). 25

21


affected (with the potential of new migration systems to emerge), and finally (in the case of the emergence of a migration system), the demographic situation of countries in a global migration network (the linkages or influence can be reversed, when the demographic situation and immigration policies influence migration behaviour and the formation of a migration network). Elaborating migration theories researchers agree that the application of a unified migration theory is complicated and virtually impossible. Nevertheless, a qualitative approach in migration research (especially when particular immigrant groups are analysed) allows us to discuss the advantages of the synthesis of migration theories as in this case, the research does not appear to conceptualise international migration phenomena. The main purpose of this paper is to reveal the peculiarities of Chinese and Turkish immigration to Lithuania by highlighting their broad and complex migration context. Different explanatory aspects from different migration theories allow a theoretical framework to be created, which helps to identify different levels of the immigration process. Social developments of the Chinese and Turkish immigrant groups: case studies The qualitative research, which is the empirical background of this paper, focuses on new immigrant groups from China and Turkey. It addresses the social developments in these immigrant groups, including the forms of social organisation and the social resources at their disposal, their integration and immigration experiences (on an individual and group level), and the social mobility opportunities available to them. The inter-group comparison is essential for migration studies to identify the impact of different factors, which shape immigration and integration processes of different immigrant groups. Research methods During the collection of data, the individual semi-structured interview method was applied, which is one of the most widely used methods in qualitative research. Despite the fact that the course (structure and sequence of questions) of such interviews with Chinese and Turkish immigrants differed due to various circumstances (the social and demographic characteristics of the respondents and the environment in which the conversations took place), emphasis was placed on disclosure of those questions prepared in advance (in accordance with the design of this research). Answers to the main research questions

22


were disclosed in different ways (through listening to life stories, asking complementary questions or performing additional interviews27). Though information that is collected using qualitative methodologies is unable to provide precise data and correlations between different research questions (however, it does reveal the main trends, predominant attitudes, experiences, values and perceptions of the two immigrant groups), this research disclosed the broad context of Chinese and Turkish immigration experiences and the strategies of social development (extending beyond such subjects as attitudes, experiences and trends) due to the reasons discussed below. Firstly, the number of Chinese and Turks in Lithuania is particularly low, therefore, the parameters for qualitative research (sampling, the number of respondents and experts) allowed a broad field of subjects to be analysed. Secondly, at the conclusion of the research (during the last interviews with Turkish respondents), entrepreneurial, labour and ethnic kinship-driven social networks among Turkish immigrants were disclosed as the last respondents (applying the snowballing method) suggested talking with (or provided information on) those Turks who had already been interviewed. Thirdly, though the number of Chinese respondents interviewed is fewer (in comparison with those Turkish respondents), information (answers to key questions) began to be repeated after the third interview (in the case of Chinese respondents, homogeneous experiences of immigration and social developments were validated by the experts). Fourthly, the specific economic activities of Chinese and Turkish immigrants in Lithuania (Chinese restaurants and Turkish kebab shops) determine relatively close cooperation within the immigrant groups analysed (at least in the context of entrepreneurial-based networks). Therefore, respondents were able to talk about themselves (or their families) on the one hand, and about the immigration (or life) experiences of friends, business partners and employees on the other hand. Finally, a certain section of Chinese and Turkish immigrants (identified as potential respondents) were interviewed as experts, which allowed them to provide more information about general immigration trends and the life experiences of Chinese and Turkish immigrants than could be provided by religious leaders, or representatives of NGOs and governmental institutions. Regardless of the limited interpretation of qualitative data on the immigration structure of Chinese and Turks, the sampling and research organisation (see below) allows deeper insight to be achieved into the peculiarities of Chinese and Turkish immigration and the social developments processes associated with it. 27

In some cases, additional interviews with Chinese and Turkish immigrants were implemented (for example, an interview with the same respondent was conducted on two different days in order to specify further information).

23


Target group, sampling and research organisation Taking into account statistical analysis (see Chinese and Turks in the general context of immigration flows) and the results of the pilot study,28 research target groups were defined and the strategy of sampling was prepared. However, the structure of sampling was adjusted as the interviews progressed. During the preparation process (sampling strategy, the organisation and instruments of the research), 30 interviews with target groups (15 with Chinese and 15 with Turkish immigrants and their family members29) and 10 with experts were planned. The primary sampling criteria were as follows: country of origin (citizenship), legal status (or grounds for arrival) and gender. As the predominant grounds for the arrival of Chinese and Turkish immigrants are family reunion and legal activities (or entrepreneurial-based immigration), the main target groups of the research were the following: (1) Chinese and Turkish entrepreneurs; (2) Chinese and Turkish labour immigrants,30 who (at the time of research implementation) were working for Chinese and Turkish entrepreneurs; and (3) family members of entrepreneurs and labour immigrants (Lithuanian citizens). As masculinisation of Chinese and Turkish immigration is a predominant feature, the vast majority of respondents were either Chinese and Turkish men (with the exception of one respondent who was a naturalised Turk) or family members of Turkish immigrants (Lithuanian citizens).31 In total, 39 respondents were interviewed (the list of respondents is provided in annex 1). Considering the lack (or absence) of research related to the topic analysed in this paper and due to the fact that Chinese and Turkish immigrants are just starting to ‘discover’ Lithuania as a country of destination, the criteria for the selection of research experts was less stringent than usual. Experts for the purposes of this research were considered to be not only those who are working in the field of migration research, representatives of NGOs and governmental institutions, but also leaders of migrant organisations and even those Chinese and Turkish immigrants, who are permanent residents of Lithuania for more than 10 or 15 years and, due to their specific activities and broad networks within the immigrant 28

The study was implemented in 2009 under the framework of the project “Third Country Nationals in Lithuania: Assessment and Indexes of Integration Policy” on the basis of an annual programme (2007) of the European Fund for the Integration of Third-country Nationals, available at: www.ces.lt/en/ethnicitystudies/published/ 29 In some cases, interviews with family members of Turkish respondents were implemented individually; while in other cases, spouses were interviewed together. 30 Chinese and Turkish labour immigration to Lithuania is explored in the context of the entrepreneurialbased activities of the immigrant groups analysed. 31 Due to respondents’ wishes, in most cases, the gender of respondents is not disclosed.

24


groups analysed, had established contacts with potential respondents. In parallel with supplying the information needed, experts performed the role of contact persons. It was assumed that experts from NGOs and governmental institutions (or at least some of them) will be able to provide useful information about the peculiarities of Chinese and Turkish immigrant lives in Lithuania and their immigration experiences. However, during the process of the research implementation, it became clear that in the Turkish case, longterm residents (Turkish citizens: managers of migrant organisations, Turkish language teachers and, in particular cases, entrepreneurs) could be considered as experts; while in the Chinese case, the circle of experts was more limited (in comparison with Turks). Therefore, with the aim of deepening the analysis of the Chinese case, individuals (mostly, Lithuanian citizens) who had established entrepreneurial-based networks and good relations with Chinese immigrants were engaged as experts. It should be noted that (with the exception of a few cases) general information about immigration trends and the life experiences of the immigrant groups analysed was provided by Chinese and Turkish immigrants themselves. Considering the lack of ‘primary’ information at an early stage in research implementation, a broad list of organisations from which to draw experts was identified and used.32 In parallel with these organisations, specific individual resources (e.g. immigrants’ business partners, Lithuanian language teachers, academics, other) were also used. The first stage in the qualitative research was interview of the experts.33 As all ‘primary’ information related to Chinese and Turkish immigration was received from the pilot study, the interview of experts at an early stage in the research allowed the geographical boundaries of the research to be applied and research instruments to be set up. Finally, the snowballing method was applied. It allowed to reach potential respondents and (in the Turkish case) to disclose information on entrepreneurial, labour, family and ethnic kinshiprelated migration networks. In parallel to experts and the snowballing method, field interpreters of Chinese and Turkish performed a specific role (together with their direct task of interpretation) as they helped to establish contacts with potential respondents.34 It 32

The list of experts included persons from the following organisations: Lithuanian Red Cross Society, International Organization for Migration (Vilnius), Centre of Oriental Studies at Vilnius University, Turkish Language Centre at Vilnius University, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Vilnius Pedagogical University, Baltic Turkish Culture Academy, Yesevi Centre at Vilnius Pedagogical University, Turkish Businessmen Association, Social and Economic Development Centre, Lithuanian Tatar community, Muslim community in Kaunas, Lithuania–China Trade Association, embassies and other organisations. 33 Interviews with experts were implemented in parallel with the entire qualitative research. This information helped to verify information from different sources. 34 A Chinese language expert in Vilnius (who had contacts with Chinese entrepreneurs in Vilnius) and a person, who had entrepreneurial and friendship ties to a Chinese entrepreneurs in Klaipeda, were engaged in the research. In the Turkish case, an assistant to a social worker at the Consulting Centre for Migrants

25


facilitated the implementation of interviews on the one hand, and allowed the study of predominant social ties within immigrant groups on the other hand. The vast majority of interviews took place in Chinese restaurants and Turkish kebab shops (interviews with experts took place in their respective organisations). Despite the different course of the interviews (between the two migrant groups35), the main research questions were responded to in an equally balanced fashion. This allowed analysis and comparison of the two different cases. However, due to the less open nature of the interviews conducted with the Chinese respondents, the individual and/or collective immigration experiences and strategies of social development of this immigrant group are not illustrated as effectively (in comparison with Turks) by using quotations. Summarising the main aspects of the organisation of the research, the emphasis should be placed on the fact that the sampling and search for respondents became an integral part of the research. The process of accessing (potential) respondents, communicating with different organisations and individuals, in parallel with holding informal interviews and keeping a researcher’s diary, allowed the environment to be monitored, additional material (which was used in data analysis and interpretation) to be collected and finally, margins of Chinese and Turkish migration networks to be disclosed. Furthermore, this information allowed researchers to respond to changes in the course of the sampling and in the correction of the research instruments.36 Research instruments and data analysis Three different research instruments were used: questionnaires for (1) experts, (2) target groups (Chinese and Turkish immigrants), and (3) family members of Turkish immigrants. Questionnaires were translated into Russian and English. In those cases where respondents did not know any of these languages (including Lithuanian), field interpreters were engaged. Research instruments were constructed according to empirical research design. In order to disclose the broad field of the analysis, questions were designed so that they could complement each other. The questionnaire for experts was designed keeping in mind the (Lithuanian Red Cross Society) was both field interpreter and contact person. However, regardless of consistent access to respondents, the majority of Chinese respondents (contrary to the Turkish case) refused to sign the research protocol and did not allow recording of their interviews (they agreed on informal conversation only). 35 Interviews with Chinese respondents were less open (in comparison with the Turkish case). Therefore, these interviews were relatively shorter but at the same time, more structured. 36 For example, family members of Turkish immigrants (as potential respondents) were included in the sampling during the process of research implementation.

26


following characteristics of Chinese and Turkish immigration peculiarities: general immigration trends; individual and collective mobility factors (migration motives); immigration experiences and strategies at individual and group levels; network types; areas of socioeconomic practices; the activities of migrant and other types of organisations (including embassies), organisational structures, etc. The questionnaire for target groups repeated the main thematic blocks, which were used in the questionnaire for experts. However, it also aimed to delve deeper into the individual life stories of each respondent and to reveal the social and demographic characteristics (on an individual and family level); the individual and/or collective immigration and the social development experiences of immigrants (housing, employment, (children) education and social services), the integration obstacles they encountered, the ways in which these obstacles were tackled and the social networks used. Due to the fact that a large amount of data was accumulated, data analysis was provided according to the principles of qualitative data analysis on the one hand, and empirical research design on the other hand. As structure, agent and migration network are interconnected indicators, the emphasis of data analysis is placed on the whole picture of immigration: from the beginning (or origins) of the immigration process to individual mobility factors (micro level), collective integration experiences (meso level) and the attitudes (of immigrants interviewed) towards immigration policies (macro level). The beginning of immigration As it is revealed in the beginning of the paper (see Chinese and Turks in the general context of immigration flows), legal grounds for the arrival of Chinese and Turkish immigrants are different: from entrepreneurship and family reunion to third-level studies and work. However, the beginning of the immigration process of the groups analysed, which occurred after the restoration of Lithuania’s independence in 1991 was quite homogeneous. According to research37 findings, first Chinese and Turkish immigrants came to Lithuania as students (particularly to learn Russian at universities). A certain percentage of those who graduated from universities subsequently stayed in the country allowing the examination of this group’s different social contexts (or ‘ways of integration’). In the case of the Chinese immigrants, a large part of those who are currently residing and working as entrepreneurs in Klaipeda, arrived to Lithuania as students. Unlike the Chinese 37

Project “Immigration Processes in Lithuania: Social Developments of Chinese and Turkish Immigrant Groups”. ERSTE Foundation Social Research Fellowship: “Generations in Dialogue”, “Migration and its Effects on Demographic and Economic Development in CEE”.

27


case (where immigrants made the transition from students to entrepreneurs), former Turkish students38 were found to have engaged in a broader range of activities as they have become entrepreneurs and established major Turkish organisations in Lithuania: for example, the Baltic Turkish Culture Academy (Balturka)39 and the Turkish Businessmen Association in Lithuania. Although the main tasks of Balturka are not related to the organisation of immigrants (as it is not a typical migrant organisation), it has a broad spectrum of networks with Turkish immigrants in Lithuania. As the beginning of the Chinese and Turkish immigration to Lithuania was marked by student immigration, individual mobility (which was relatively homogenous) was determined by such structural factors as the lower cost of third-level education, demand for Russian language studies (after the collapse of the Soviet Union) and networks (programmes, initiatives, etc.) between universities and other institutions in countries of origin and destination. Though it seems that the individual calculation of immigration costs and benefits (and migration network) had no significant impact on Chinese and Turkish students’ migration motives, individual life strategies were identified (however, in parallel with strong institutional networks and economic conditions). According to the results of this research, some of the Turkish students come to Lithuania to avoid military service; others arrive following an invitation from friends. However, together with student immigration, other trends in Chinese and Turkish immigration40 were revealed, which could be considered as insignificant (with regard to general immigration trends) but at the same time – diverse (with regard to immigration and integration experiences).41 According to the research findings (in parallel with student immigration), at the beginning of the transition period after 1991, Lithuania became an attractive country in which to develop a business. This was related to a demand for Russian speakers (as research has shown, the first Turkish entrepreneurs came to Lithuania in 1991–1992).

38

It could be considered as the beginning of Turkish immigration to Lithuania. Balturka (http://www.balturka.com/) was established with the purpose of enabling cultural exchanges between Turkey and Lithuania. The main purposes and priorities of the association are not related to organising Turkish immigrants in Lithuania (however, according to the research findings, in some cases, the association is dealing with the day-to-day problems of immigrants). 40 These trends could be considered as entrepreneurial-based immigration. However, it was related to establishing entrepreneurial-based networks as the first immigrants (for business purposes) arrived in 1991– 1992. 41 According to the research findings, in the case of the immigration of Turkish students, a strong institutional aspect was observed (both in organising immigration and support of the activities of Turkish immigrants in Lithuania). It could be related either to priorities of particular institutions and/or organisations, or individual features of immigrants. 39

28


First Turkish immigrants to Lithuania If I am right, the first students from Turkey arrived in 1993. One organisation from Turkey sent two students that year…> Later, four or five students arrived (among them was the man who would go on to become Turkish businessmen in Lithuania and the founder of the Turkish Businessmen Association in Lithuania). They arrived to study Russian at Vilnius Pedagogical University and have stayed in the country ever since. One of them got married … now he has children …> Others came earlier, in 1991 or 1992 to establish businesses. They thought that it was the right time to do so … following the separation from the Soviet Union (restoration of Lithuanian independence). They also got married … had children and received Lithuanian citizenship…> They came as entrepreneurs and started to trade in textiles … later establishing a tourist agency…> Now, students are coming through the same route …> But now they are studying English (23.05.201, No. E-8). Well, I could tell the same story (as the person who arrived as a student and established the Turkish Businessmen Association in Lithuania) … but I came here in 2003 to work as a teacher. However, it was very hard to become established in a school; so, I have started to study Russian and pedagogy. I have been studying and, at the same time, teaching in a cultural centre. The purpose of coming to Lithuania was for work. However, study and language became interesting topics for me. After finishing my studies of Russian, a group of us decided to establish Balturka (the Baltic Turkish Culture Academy), to organise conferences, seminars, and to teach language (Turkish) … six persons were involved, two Lithuanian and four Turkish (26.05.2011, No. E-4). I should say that I am one of the first (Turkish immigrants in Lithuania)...> Also, a few students came in 1994 and 1995…> Later, a few more came in 1996. After 2000, students started to arrive under the Erasmus programme…> (14.07.2011, No. R-3). I came from Antalya. After I finished school, I decided to learn Russian. At that time, many tourists were coming to Antalya… from post-Soviet countries … they were buying houses, villas, flats … or coming just for holidays. Therefore, the Russian language was popular. But my family was anti-communist, so they did not let me go to Russia. That is why I decided to go to the Baltic countries … to Lithuania as studies here lasted four, but not five years. So, I came as a student (26 05 2011 / 18 08 2011, No. R-1). First Chinese immigrants to Lithuania Those, who live here long term, will stay… Especially those, who arrived 20 years ago to study in the Pedagogical (the Vilnius Pedagogical University)…> All of those (Chinese immigrants) who have businesses here (in Klaipeda) studied different courses at the Pedagogical…> But they all studied Russian there (29.08.2011, No. E-2).42 He speaks Russian fluently … In Soviet times it was possible to study free of charge. So, he decided to go to Moscow. After that, he started to trade. After perestroika … it was possible to buy anything. So, he bought this and that … After, some friends suggested that he establish a business in Lithuania. He is a very rich and clever man. He has two sons. They are in the business... (29 08 2011, No. E-2).

The shift in socio-economic status Examining the beginning of Chinese and Turkish immigration to Lithuania, some other important aspects should be emphasised. Due to the fact that the ‘first immigrants’ came as students (few as entrepreneurs), there is a strong potential for permanent residency and for the undertaking of a broad spectrum of activities in Lithuania. Moreover, it shows a diverse context of integration and a shift in socio-economic status, which requires further 42

All quotations are edited and translated.

29


analysis. However, the comparison of the initial status of the Chinese and Turks (as ‘first immigrants’) with their current social and economic positions allows us to discuss the social developments in the immigrant groups analysed. On the one hand, many immigrants have left Lithuania for different reasons (unsuccessful businesses, immigration policy, etc.); on the other hand, with regards to those who have settled in the three largest cities in the country, different immigration and integration strategies were revealed. The results of the research illustrate a significant shift in the socio-economic status of those Chinese and Turks, who arrived in Lithuania in the period of 1992–2000 and who have stayed in the country up to the present day. However, the immigration and integration experiences of those who arrived relatively recently (for example, as entrepreneurs and family members after EU enlargement in 2004) is different when compared with ‘the first stream’ of immigration. This could be explained by a period of living in Lithuania and by migration motives. Research showed that the first Chinese and Turkish immigrants in Lithuania did not have a broad spectrum of social networks. Therefore, setting up organisations and businesses, employing workers and other processes were relatively complicated. While those immigrants who came later (with an invitation from friends, business partners and employers), started to ‘use’ an informal integration infrastructure, which was created by the first immigrants. In such cases, migration motives and processes of social development were determined by social and economic networks. Another important aspect is migration planning. If the first Chinese and Turkish students to arrive in Lithuania had no particular plans to establish businesses and migrant organisations in the country (the primary migration motive was studies of Russian and other life strategies), those who came later had a specific plan (earning and leaving, earning and staying, other). The migration motives, shifts in socio-economic statuses and informal infrastructure of the integration of the first Chinese and Turkish immigrants on the one hand, and the planned immigration of those who came to Lithuania relatively later on the other hand determined the different characteristics of individual and/or collective mobility in an interaction of micro and meso levels and preconditions for broad migration network to emerge in the biggest Lithuanian cities at meso level. Consequently, the shift in the socio-economic statuses of the first immigrants assumed an organic shape. Shift in socio-economic status I started to work as a chef in a friend’s restaurant. Later, my friend changed his business profile…> Then … I started to work in the other place (other restaurant). After that … I saved some money and opened my own restaurant (15.07.2011, No. R-3). I came to Lithuania in 1996 together with my friend to study Russian. We finished university. We liked

30


living here. So, we decided to stay. I have family ‌ ten years ‌ I am married. My wife is Lithuanian ... We have a child; he is two and a half years old. We are living and enjoying ... After university I started to work in the Ibrahim Centre. After a year, we created our own company ‌ in textiles, after that, in kebabs. Now, I have six cafes in Vilnius (09 08 2011, No. R-10).

Such an experience is common in both migrant groups (Chinese and Turkish). For example: from a student in Vilnius to an entrepreneur in Klaipeda (3 Chinese restaurants); from a labour immigrant to an entrepreneur (Chinese restaurants in Vilnius and Klaipeda); from small-scale entrepreneurship to ownership of a large company, which produces goods, related to the production of kebabs in Vilnius; from a student to the co-founder and president of Turkish organisations in Vilnius, etc.

Individual mobility Contrary to the seeming predictability of immigration from these groups when it began, the analysis of general Chinese and Turkish immigration trends evidences the complexity of immigration, which has a significant impact on integration processes. The analysis of individual mobility factors showed that the main immigration channel for Chinese immigrants is entrepreneurship (and family reunion as a follow-up to entrepreneurshipbased immigration to a lesser extent) while for Turks, it is family reunion (and entrepreneurship-based immigration to a lesser extent). Immigration of Chinese and Turkish labourers could be explained through entrepreneurship and labour relations-based networks (in the context of Chinese and Turkish entrepreneurship in Lithuania43). However, according to the research, the last socio-economic position of both immigrant groups analysed is usually entrepreneurship. However, this status is achieved differently by each group. In the Turkish case, family migration (as a legal ground for the issuance of a residence permit) determines a relatively simple integration context as, according to the research findings, immigrants arrive in an environment where an informal infrastructure for integration (for example, social and family networks) is already in place. Family networks play a crucial role in relation to such integration obstacles as language and the issuance or extension of documents (visas and residence permits), access to housing, employment and social services. As the majority of Turkish immigrants arrive as family members, there are different migration strategies with regard to the environment where the decision to migrate was made. Usually, in cases of family migration, specifically in the case of mixed marriages, the decision between Lithuania and Turkey as a country of residence is made. According to research findings, a large number of married couples decide to stay in

43

These are cases where Chinese and Turkish immigrants are invited to Lithuania as labour immigrants to work in Chinese restaurants and Turkish kebab shops.

31


Turkey, while the rest migrate to Lithuania. In such case, the usual rationale behind the decision is the current socio-economic status of the family and the employment opportunities in each country. However, those who arrive as entrepreneurs or labour immigrants (in the context of Turkish entrepreneurship in Lithuania) are usually invited to the country by Turkish entrepreneurs who are generally trying to assist the immigrants with integration obstacles. Individual mobility factors: Turkish immigrants I arrived 16 years ago … in 1996, together with my friend (co-founder of the Turkish Businessmen Association in Lithuania). We studied Russian and later, English and literature…> (26.05.2011 / 18.08.2011, No. R-1). I arrived (as a labour immigrant) to find work in Ozas, in construction and logistics … five years ago. I have been working there for two years...> (26.05.2011, No. R-2). <…I have been here (in Lithuania) … since 1996. From 1994 to 1996 … together with my wife … I lived in Russia … later in 1996, we arrived in Lithuania …> (14.07.2011, No. R-3). <… five years ago, after I got married (marriage in Turkey)…> (2011 06 09, No. R-4). <… since 1995, 16 years ago. I was working in Istanbul as a shop assistant. People from Lithuania used to come into the shop to buy goods. They were going back and forth between Lithuania and Istanbul … that’s how I got to know them. They liked me as I helped them a lot. They invited me to visit Lithuania…> <… I came here and … I liked living here … in Lithuania … very much. After that, my managers (of the company in Istanbul) proposed to establish a branch of their company in Lithuania. So, I started to work here. After a year and a half, the situation with the company was not good and the managers ordered me to return to Turkey. However, I decided to stay here … I got used to Lithuania…> (09.08.2011, No. R-9). My friends came here and established a business...> Later, they invited me to work here as a chef (18.08.2011, No. R-14). One of my friends offered me a job here. So, I have stayed. He is Turkish, he opened kebab shop. He wanted me to be the manager (22.08.2011, No. R-16).

In the Chinese case, different trends were observed. The majority of Chinese immigrants arrive as entrepreneurs, therefore they face different integration obstacles to the Turks such as problems related to bringing their families (spouses to a lesser extent, and children to a greater extent); establishing businesses (knowledge of company law); understanding the language and having an uncertain legal status in Lithuania (according to research findings, those who have two or more children, are afraid of coming back to China due to its one-child policy). However, the Chinese usually arrive in an environment with social networks. According to research findings, there are at least a few immigration scenarios which are prevalent in the case of Chinese immigration. If the Chinese arrive as labour immigrants (in the context of Chinese entrepreneurship in Lithuania – chefs in most cases), employers (Chinese entrepreneurs) usually provide all the necessary assistance 32


(for example, visas or residence permits, housing, day-to-day difficulties). After a certain period of time (up to four years of work in Chinese restaurants as chefs), employees either leave the country (according to Lithuanian labour immigration policy), or try to establish their own businesses (in some cases, with the assistance of a former employer). In such cases, vacancies are usually filled by other labour immigrants from China (generally upon recommendation by former chefs or on the initiative of the entrepreneur (owner).44 The above-mentioned scenarios evidence Chinese immigration potential to Lithuania and processes related to the enlargement of entrepreneurial-based networks. However, there is not much data on how many Chinese immigrants have left the country or how many of them manage to change their status from employee to entrepreneur (though research showed that such a trend exists). The analysis of different immigration motives of Chinese immigrants in the current socio-economic situation revealed that regardless of the legal grounds for arrival, which could be considered as real immigration motives (in the case of student immigration) or an initial point of reference to improve on their economic situation and later to establish a business (in cases of labour and entrepreneurial-related immigration), the very last position is related to entrepreneurship. Even in the case of family reunion (when a Chinese entrepreneur is bringing his/her family to Lithuania), there is a strong trend of establishing family business (in Chinese restaurants). Individual mobility factors: the Chinese I came here in order to start a business. In China … we also had a business…> My husband’s (he is Chinese) teacher, who teaches cookery, had arrived here first and told us that life here is not as intense as in China … (husband came first) he (husband) invited me to work in his restaurant. My husband has been working for other people (in Lithuania). We communicate over the Internet. After, we lost our business in China… I was selling furniture (in China, after they lost business there)…> My husband encouraged me just to look around…> After one and a half years, an opportunity to start our own business came up. During the economic crisis, a person (Chinese) sold his restaurant…> (07.20.2011, No. R-8). <…I came to Lithuania three years ago. My husband, father of my child came… five years ago. At that time, he was working as a chef in a restaurant owned by a Lithuanian (20.07.2011, No. R-8). My friend had a business in Lithuania. He needed someone to help him with it. So, he organised a visa for me (29.08.2011, No. R- 9). I arrived in 1996 to work in a Chinese restaurant. It was the beginning of the Chinese restaurants in Lithuania (18.07.2011, No. R-1). I arrived 10 years ago to study Russian (15.07.2011, No. R-3; 17.07.2011 / 18.07.2011, No. R-7).

44

According to the research findings, some Chinese chefs came to Lithuania from Harbin (the capital and the largest city of Heilongjiang Province in northeast China), where a special Chinese catering school for the European market is established.

33


I arrived 10 years ago. I was invited to work as a chef in a Chinese restaurant (22.05.2011 / 23.05.2011, No. R-4). I arrived straight after the collapse of the Soviet Union. My friends from Lithuania suggested that I start a business. I came here just to look around … later, I accepted an offer to work in Lithuania (20.06.2011, No. R-6). My friend had a business in Lithuania. He needed an assistant and arranged a visa for me. This type of work was better paid in Lithuania … compared with China. However, it is becoming almost the same…> (15.07.2011, No. R-3).

Summarising the analysis of the environment where the decision to migrate was made, the distinction between the legal grounds for arrival, and individual and structural mobility factors should be made and emphasised. While analysing the preconditions of Chinese and Turkish student immigration to Lithuania after the restoration of independence, structural factors (such as institutional networks, the lower cost of third-level education and use of the Russian language as a ‘business instrument’) were revealed. Unlike student immigration, entrepreneurship and family-based immigration is more diverse: research disclosed that in the decision to migrate (at least in the case of entrepreneurship and family immigration), macroeconomic circumstances (structure) are not as crucial as social networks. In the Chinese case, the decision to migrate is determined by such factors as migration networks (ethnic kinship, including social ties between entrepreneurs in Lithuania and potential immigrants in China). In the Turkish case, the decision to migrate is determined by family networks and a rational choice (agent) between two countries. It seems that in both cases (the Chinese and Turkish) individual mobility is determined by economic factors or structure (as it is entrepreneurial-based immigration). However, as research showed, the final factor on which the decision to migrate is based is social. Migration motives: specific time for the study of Russian I wanted to study history and law, but I have not succeeded. However, in 1995 and 1996, it was popular to study abroad … to learn languages. We (four of us) had plans to go to Russia to learn Russian as after the collapse of the Soviet Union… those who knew Russian managed to earn a lot of money. Our purpose was the same…> (26.05.2011, No. E-4). Individual mobility factors: the final factor in the decision to migrate (the Chinese and Turks) My friend invited me to work in his restaurant (26.09.2011, No. R-10). I was invited to come to Lithuania by the owner of a Chinese restaurant in Vilnius. He arranged all the necessary documents (18.07.2011, No. R-1). I came here to study Russian at the Vilnius Pedagogical University (15.07.2011, No. R-3). It was challenging for me to use my business skills in Lithuania. So, I have started working here (20.06.2011, No. R-6).

34


Friend invited me. We have been working with him for eight years. After that we decided not to work together any more (10.08.2011, No. R-11). Friends invited me (17.08.2011, No. R-12). My uncle and his Turkish friends helped me. They knew that I would come. So, they arranged a flat for me (22.18.2011, No. R-16). At that time, one student from Lithuania arrived in Istanbul. He invited us to Lithuania and told us that Lithuania is a normal country with a strict police force… not like in Russia. That is why we came here. We arrived to learn Russian. But then, we enjoyed living here… That is the story (26.05.2011, No. E-4). <…I told that we should live in Lithuania as I have a daughter from my first marriage. It would be difficult for her to adapt (in Turkey). However, it was a common decision (between husband and wife to live in Lithuania rather in Turkey) (18.08.2011, No. R-14)

Along with migration motives, immigration experiences of the Chinese and Turks evidence a trend of direct migration as the vast majority of respondents came to Lithuania directly from China or Turkey. However, some of the respondents revealed a broader immigration experience in different countries (for example, before coming to Lithuania one Turkish and one Chinese immigrant has been residing in Russia, another Turk had lived in Germany). Moreover, according to research findings, Turkish immigration to Lithuania from different countries could be considered as being a trend: according to the experts’ interviews, Turks arrive from Turkey, Sweden or Germany. This trend could be illustrated by official statistics and unofficial estimations of Turkish immigration (as it is indicated in the beginning of the paper, see Chinese and Turks in the general context of immigration flows). Migration way <… there were many of them (Chinese companies)…> clothes, jewellery. Some of them came from Poland, but they did not communicate in any language than Chinese. However, they closed all shops and companies here (in Lithuania)…> The majority are coming directly from China. Though, there was one from Russia, who has been studying economics there (he is Chinese). Very rich family…> He has a wife who is Russian. They live between the two cities, either in Moscow, or in Klaipeda (29.08.2011, No. E-2). <... In 2008, Chinese immigrants started coming from Hungary. They were looking at places for shops. Due to recent crisis … They were looking for markets. Many of them came here … opened shops in Vilnius, Panevezys, Utena, Siauliai. In all the biggest cities. … They brought cheap goods, very cheap clothes … (28 08 2011, No. E-1). Seventy per cent of Turks came from South Turkey … Antalya, 30 % from Europe … Germany and other similar countries. I am talking about those who arrived married (01 06 2011, No. E-6). I came from Ankara. I have business in Lithuania … opened my own office. Before that I had been working in Russia, Libya … My boss invited me … he offered me work at OZAS constructions (26 05 2011, No. R-2).

35


Integration on an individual and group level General problematical aspects (raised above) evidence the various experiences of the different groups analysed. The Chinese could be characterised as relatively homogenous in terms of integration experiences; while a diversity of the integration process was observed with Turkish immigrants. However, in order to illustrate the different integration experiences on an individual and group level, the following problematic areas are focused on: (1) social and demographic characteristics of the Chinese and Turks (age, marital status and education); (2) entrepreneurial-based activities (including family and economic networks); and (3) social networks (within and outside of ethnic kinship, direct contacts with Lithuanian society). The analysis of these social and demographic characteristics revealed differences with regard to education, and the marital and legal status of the Chinese and Turkish respondents. According to the research findings, the vast majority of the Chinese immigrants have graduated from higher education; while the educational qualifications of the Turkish respondents varies from secondary to higher level (in particular cases, Turkish respondents indicated that education (both secondary and higher level) was incomplete). Although the majority of the respondents were between 30â&#x20AC;&#x201C;45 years of age, some other trends occurred (for example, a 23-year-old Turkish immigrant who works for a Turkish entrepreneur or a 58-year-old Chinese immigrant who is a shareholder in a Lithuanian company). All Chinese respondents indicated that they are married (the vast majority of spouses are Chinese citizens) and the majority of them have children (one or two; and in some cases three). With regard to family status, the trend for a transnational family emerged as some of the Chinese live with one infant in Lithuania45 while another one is in China (in such cases, respondents emphasised the reason as the strict Lithuanian immigration policy with regards to bringing their children into the country). The majority of the Chinese immigrants are living in Lithuania with permanent residence permits as some of them came to Lithuania 10, 15 or 17 years ago or right after the collapse of the Soviet Union (however, other immigrants came later, three to five years ago). Unlike the Chinese case, the family status of Turkish respondents is more diverse as some of them are married (the vast majority of spouses are Lithuanian citizens; in one case, the spouse was a citizen of Turkey), while some of them are not (in one case, the respondent indicated that he is divorced, in another the respondent was a widower). More 45

Which, in most cases, were born in Lithuania.

36


than half of the respondents have children (one or two). The legal status of Turkish respondents could be split into two parts of approximately equal size of those with temporary and those with permanent residence permits. Some of the Turkish respondents came to Lithuania 16 years ago (as students mainly but also as entrepreneurs), while others arrived more recently (2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 12 or 13 years ago). Regardless of the differences that were identified between the social and demographic characteristics of the Chinese and Turkish respondents, the processes of the social developments of the immigrant groups analysed is determined by various aspects. However, social networks could be considered as a crucial aspect, which, in the Turkish case, are more determined by family and entrepreneurial-based networks, while in the Chinese case, more individual experiences hold sway (with significant differences between those immigrants who reside in Klaipeda and those who reside in Vilnius). Therefore, the processes of social developments are illustrated through the analysis of entrepreneurialbased activities and social networks. The entrepreneurial-based activities of Chinese and Turkish immigrants in Lithuania evidence a few main trends. The establishment of family-related entrepreneurship could be considered as one trend, which in the Chinese case is prevailing to a greater extent, while to a lesser extent in the Turkish case. This trend could be explained by different immigration motives. Those Turkish immigrants, who came to Lithuania as family members,

usually

establish

small-scale

entrepreneurial

businesses

(without

big

investments), while there are only a few examples of large-scale entrepreneurship of Turkish immigrants. According to some experts, the entrepreneurial-based activities of Turkish immigrants should be considered with reservation as in many cases, the resulting businesses are particularly permanent (and should be considered as only attempts to establish entrepreneurship in order to survive). Entrepreneurship of Turkish immigrants <…we also are trying to attract large-scale Turkish businessmen to Lithuania. But there are only a few of them … such as Ibrahim. Another is working with jeans; another with vegetables … those who has bigger businesses…> The majority of people (Turkish immigrants) have met their wives in Turkey. They (Turkish immigrants with their wives) came to Lithuania … many of them. They do not know language and have no money. Usually they open kiosks or something. There are many such cases, which you consider as small-scale entrepreneurship. But this is not business. This is just done to survive … they have arrived in Lithuania, do not know the language and cannot find work. What do they do? They have to live … somehow (26.05.2011, E-4).

37


However, family-related entrepreneurship of Turkish immigrants in Lithuania is more of an exception rather than a trend as, according to research findings, spouses of those Turkish immigrants who come to Lithuania as family members, are usually employed (or were employed before marriage) in Lithuania. Though, few cases of family-related entrepreneurship were identified. Family-related entrepreneurship of Turkish immigrants It is very difficult with regards to free time as one of us always has to be at work…> we cannot leave our company…> It is not a good place for business. If you leave it (kebab shop, which is open 24 hours a day) in the morning, you will not find it in the evening (business have to be supervised all the time as, according to respondents, it is dangerous place) …> <… usually, we do not go to these meetings (collective meeting for Turkish immigrants) as we are working until 10 in the evening (18.08.2011, R-14).

Considering the family-based entrepreneurship of Chinese immigrants, different trends were observed. As the majority of Chinese immigrants arrive as entrepreneurs (or as family members or as employee of those who established entrepreneurship in Lithuania), the trend for family-related entrepreneurship is strong. However, there are many cases when one of the family members is residing in Lithuania as an entrepreneur, while the other is an employee (in legal terms – labour immigrant). In such cases, the immigrant’s legal status, in the context of immigration, is just a formality. Moreover, in order to tackle administrative issues related to immigration documents (dealing with immigration restrictions such as family reunification, issuance of residence permits, justification of residence or application for a residence permit), different strategies are applied.46 Family-related entrepreneurship of Chinese immigrants I have a restaurant; my wife is also working there. She is helping in the kitchen and is in charge of ordering goods. Our child is going to kindergarten (29.08.2011, No. R-9). Together with my wife … we have opened a Chinese restaurant (22.05.2011 / 23.05.2011, No. R-4). We have a family business of restaurants. My daughter is going to school (25.05.201, No R-5).

The overall analysis of the family-based entrepreneurship of Chinese and Turkish immigrants showed, that in both cases, the maintenance of a family business in Lithuania is difficult due to various reasons: from the current economic situation in the country and the legal regulation on foreigners in establishing companies to the uncertainty of the legal status of immigrants in particular. The last-mentioned argument is especially relevant with regard to family migration, when, due to temporary residence in Lithuania, intentions to 46

Due to ethical aspects, these are not disclosed in this paper.

38


develop entrepreneurship (especially to a larger scale) are limited. However, as the Chinese are developing family businesses, the concentration of human and financial resources goes towards one particular restaurant (or in some cases, a network of restaurants); while in the Turkish case, family businesses are usually smaller (one or two kiosks, small bistros, which unlike Chinese restaurants, are open 24 hours a day). Family-related entrepreneurship of Turkish immigrants and uncertainty of legal status If the taxes will increase, we will have to leave (to Turkey). Or, if my husband does not receive his visaâ&#x20AC;Ś If they will not give him a residence permit, I will go (to Turkey) â&#x20AC;Ś I will follow my husband (18.08.2011, R-14).

With the distinction of family and individual entrepreneurship, the emphasis should be placed on different trends of entrepreneurial-based activities of the immigrant groups analysed (as family-related entrepreneurship is prevailing in the Chinese case to a greater extent when compared with Turkish immigrants). However, looking at the peculiarities of the entrepreneurship of Chinese and Turkish immigrants, such factors as economic (cooperational) ties are as important as family-related entrepreneurship. Though, as the research showed, economic ties usually are determined by immigration experiences (including the initial socio-economic environment), geographical aspect and social (family and friends-related) networks. In the Chinese case, geographical aspect is especially important as those who reside in Klaipeda have established larger spectrum of social (including economic) networks when compared with those in Vilnius. This trend could be explained by the fact that the majority of the Chinese who are residing in Klaipeda have graduated from university in Vilnius (particularly the Vilnius Pedagogical University). It evidences a broad spectrum of social networks and a large potential for economic ties with relation to entrepreneurial-based activities. Contrary to the situation in Klaipeda, the Chinese in Vilnius could not be characterised by large social (and economic) networks as the results of the research showed that Chinese immigrants in Vilnius are more diverse (in terms of social and demographic characteristics, residence time in Lithuania and migration motives). However, there are other important aspects, which determine the different types of networks of Chinese immigrants in Lithuania (which was mentioned by the majority of the Chinese respondents): due to working long hours, seven days a week, Chinese entrepreneurs (families) usually have no free time. This fact is limiting the potential to establish social and economic ties both with other Chinese immigrants and society in general. 39


Peculiarities of entrepreneurship of the Chinese immigrants Four chefs used to work here. Now … there are about ten in one restaurant. One shift in the morning, the other in the evening. They are opening (restaurants) at 10 in the morning and closing at 12 at night. All the chefs are Chinese, but in other restaurants … Lithuanians are working. At her restaurant, some son of an uncle’s brother or cousin … all family. At the others … I did not notice any such family network…. So to say … at that restaurant (one of restaurants in Klaipeda) … he took on chef from Lithuania, he is Chinese. He attracted him from the other restaurant in Vilnius or Kaunas. Later, due to a shortage of staff … he invited Chinese from China. There is a school in Harbin (in China), where chefs particularly for European markets are trained. It is possible to send a request for staff … usually managers there observing those who are the best… Even those in Vilnius Akropolis (supermarket in Vilnius) invited the Chinese from Harbin (29.08.2011, No. E-2) For example, one Lithuanian … he has a big restaurant… When he decided to open his own Chinese restaurant … a few times … he went to Shanghai. When he was there … he used to stay in one hotel where he met a Chinese chef. Later, he invited him to work as a chef in his new restaurant… He (Chinese chef) lives together with the owner of that restaurant… (29.08.2011, No. E-2) Klaipeda – is a very different city compared with the others. Chinese life is different as well (29.08.2011, No. E-2) They (the Chinese) usually are invited to work here. After some time, some of them open their own restaurants. For example …one arrived seven years ago … and after five years of work he opened a restaurant. There are chefs who are working here, after that … they are leaving the country and later they came back again (29.08.2011, No. E-2) The Chinese are not competing with each other. If there is a restaurant in Antakalnis, people from Antakalnis go there. People from Basanaviciaus Street go to the restaurant in that street. There is no competition. There are about 50 restaurants (in Vilnius) (15.07.2011, No. R-3) <…not much. Though, they communicate (the Chinese) rarely. He (Chinese immigrant) told me that they do communicate … have meetings, but rarely. They have no time … celebrations … they do not celebrate together. Usually, some people from the embassy call and invite them … however, they do not go… they have neither the time nor the money to go there (from Klaipeda to Vilnius) and stay for few days. They do not go anywhere from their restaurants. All the time … they are there… they cannot leave their restaurants… managing them all the time (29.08.2011, No. E-2) Before … I had no time … until my child was born, I had just a few free days as I was working from Monday to Sunday. If I want to have a rest, I have to pay someone else a salary … it costs. Now, after my child was born, I cannot work, so, I am resting. My husband is working at weekends as the dishwashers are not working… (15.07.2011, No. R-3) <… yes, usually we help each other … For example, if a Chinese chef has no work… in such a case, others will try to help… to find another restaurant where he could work. Once, I have helped to bring his wife as I had such experience … I am communicating with other Chinese in order to exchange information… what is interesting for Lithuanians, what kind of food is popular, what kind of food to prepare… But it happens only among friends (15.07.2011, No. R-2).

The economic ties of Turkish immigrants could be compared with those of the Chinese in Vilnius as the vast majority (73%) of Turkish immigrants reside in Vilnius. According to the research findings, Turkish immigrants (similar to the Chinese in Vilnius) have not established a large spectrum of economic ties between each other (as entrepreneurs). However, economic ties with relation to trading of produce (for example, which is needed for kebab shops) exist. However, this should not be considered as a trend. Comparing 40


other kind of networks, which are related to entrepreneurial-based activities (for example, the assistance regarding employment and immigration, which exists in Klaipeda in the Chinese case), Turkish immigrants in Vilnius have elaborate ties, which could be considered to be more remote (for example, ties related to labour relations between a Turkish entrepreneur and a Turkish employee). With regard to Turkish entrepreneurship in Vilnius, the aspect of competition should be mentioned as currently production of kebabs (compared with textiles and vegetables) is the most widespread entrepreneurial-based activity of Turkish immigrants in Lithuania (in addition to being relatively popular among Lithuanian citizens also). Unlike Turkish immigrants, who operate in at least four different areas of entrepreneurship (kebabs, textiles, vegetables and to a lesser extent, trading in Gariunai Market in Vilnius), the Chinese are entrepreneurs in the hospitality industry (Chinese restaurants) and to a lesser extent (like Turkish immigrants) in the above-mentioned Gariunai Market. However, the Chinese in Klaipeda have a broader spectrum of entrepreneurial-based activities (clothes, building materials, market trading). Peculiarities of entrepreneurship of Turkish immigrants Yes, we are providing (goods, related to the production of kebabs). As the amount we produce is limited, we are distributing twice in a week. The driver is delivering it to kebab shops. Now he also delivers to Kedainiai and Panevezys. There are different routes… not only in Vilnius and Kaunas. Also in Panevezys, Kedainiai, Taurage. There are many… (14.07.2011, No. R-3). I was prepared to go back to Turkey, but my friend invited me to work with him. So, I have stayed. It is not for money … We are good friends … a good relationship with him was the reason that I have stayed. We will see … If I succeed, I will stay … if not, I will go back to Turkey (22.08.2011, No. R-16)

The aspect of economic ties could also be illustrated by the fact that both Chinese and Turkish immigrants tend to sell companies to each other (not between family members, but to other immigrants from China and Turkey). In some cases, it happens either due to an unsuccessful entrepreneurial-based activity or due to co-operative ties between each other. However, it demonstrates a background in these communities that shows a potential for the enlargement of entrepreneurial-based networks. Both family-related entrepreneurship and economic ties should be discussed in the context of the entrepreneurial-based activities of immigrant groups analysed as it is one of the main aspects of the social developments of Chinese and Turkish immigrant groups. Moreover, in the Turkish case, marital status (as a migration motive) determines other important aspects of integration, including economic ties with regards to entrepreneurship

41


to a lesser extent, and social networks47 to a greater extent; while in the Chinese case, social networks are embedded either in the initial environment of immigration (Chinese in Klaipeda, who arrived as students in Vilnius), or (to a greater extent) in the migrants’ individual immigration and integration experiences in Vilnius (limited social and economic ties between the Chinese immigrants and society in general). With regard to the complexity of integration, family and economic ties are elaborate (see below) in a broader context of social networks as (in the case of the Chinese and Turkish integration in Lithuania) it gives a background to the analysis of processes related to social developments. Social networks are revealed considering such indicators as social ties within and outside of ethnic kinship and direct contacts with Lithuanian society. Finally, the role of immigrant organisations in the processes of social developments of Chinese and Turkish immigrant groups in Lithuania is revealed. The analysis of the social networks of immigrant groups analysed showed that in the Chinese case, entrepreneurial-based networks converge with networks related to the informal infrastructure of integration (assistance in order to access employment and housing or to tackle the administrative issues related to visas and residence permits). It means, that assistance with regard to employment, housing, visas or residence permits is usually related either to labour relations (between a Chinese entrepreneur and an employee from China) or co-operational ties between entrepreneurs (in particular cases, co-operational ties assume a competitive shape). Assistance There is Migration Service. At the time, when … about 50 Chinese (labour immigrants) had been working in the harbour … now, there are no Chinese … one person was responsible for documents. He was Lithuanian … He was dealing with issues related to housing… he was doing everything for them… Those who have their own restaurants are now doing everything for themselves. Owners of restaurants are doing everything for chefs as they are coming from China and do not know language. They are going together… translating everything, arranging documents, going to the municipality for registration. <... yes, when they inviting chefs to immigrate to Lithuania, they definitely have to assist them (29.08.2011, No. E-2) There are cases, when chefs are working in different restaurants with certificates of individual activities. For example, half day in one restaurant … another half in another restaurant (29.08.2011, No. E-2)

As it was discussed above, the social networks of Turkish immigrants are related to an informal infrastructure of integration; particularly family and entrepreneurial-based networks. Those who are coming as family members usually have an advantage as the 47

For example, in some cases, family networks allow Turkish immigrants to established contacts between each other (between those, who arrived as family members. In some particular cases, the initiation comes from Turks’ wives). More often, social networks are determined by immigration experiences (between those who arrived together or between Turks who invited and who received invitation).

42


most important issue related to integration obstacles are dealt with the assistance of family members (and family friends). Those who are coming to establish legal activities (entrepreneurship) usually are coming with a particular proposal or plan to an environment where social networks (created by Turkish immigrants in Lithuania) are already in place. Family networks of Turkish immigrants At the beginning, my friends came from Turkey. They established a business here … created small factory. They invited me to come and work for them as a chef. Together with partners from Germany … they established a business here. They invited me to work … I was told that everything would be fine here. I knew them for a long time … so, I came. I worked for them for two years. After … we established a company together. Later, we split … Some things went wrong. I noticed that we are doing wrong things. Before, I did not know the Lithuanian language … I was afraid that something would happen to me. … I said that we should not do business together any more. After a year … my wife gained a certificate as a chef … I asked my wife to come and join me, she is Turkish. She arrived here, we started working together. Later, my wife established a company … we … together. But later, migration (Migration Department) … informed us you cannot receive a residence permit without capital of ten thousand. So, I have sold 50% of the company shares to my wife… My wife became director and I – the chef. Also, we established a business in Kaunas. However, the employees had not been working properly so, we had to close it (18.08.2011, No. R-15) I have an uncle, he have arrived here 20 years ago. He is one of the first Turkish immigrants to Lithuania (22.08.2011, No. R-16)

Interaction with the host society The analysis of the social networks of Chinese and Turkish immigrants with the host society should be considered in the context of migration motives and economic activities. For example, those Turks who are coming to Lithuania as family members have more contacts with the host society than those who are coming as migrant workers or entrepreneurs (certainly, there are exceptions as the time spent in the country of destination has a significant impact on the social ties of the immigrant with the host society). If family members of Lithuanian citizens have a particular level of interaction (at least within the family and with family friends), Turkish entrepreneurs and migrant workers usually enter an environment where only internal networks within the immigrant group exists. However, after a certain period of time spent in Lithuania, new forms of interaction with the host society emerge. Contrary to the Turkish case, Chinese immigrants manage to establish a smaller circle of contacts with the host society as majority of them are coming as entrepreneurs (with families) from China or migrant workers (invited by other Chinese immigrants in Lithuania). If the Chinese in Klaipeda have stronger internal ties within immigrant groups than with the host society (as the majority of them have finished university in Vilnius and know each 43


other since their arrival to Lithuania), those who live in Vilnius have neither strong internal ties within their immigrant group nor external ties with the host society. In parallel with migration motives, the level of interaction with the host society is determined by economic activities and individual characteristics of immigrants. If Turkish immigrants (due to more elaborate social resources) are enjoying a variety of popular entertainment and sports (e.g. football, fishing, local tourism) both with Turks and Lithuanians, Chinese immigrants usually do not participate in any of these (or they participate within the immigrant group). However, in both (Chinese and Turkish) cases, this is also related to long working hours, especially if restaurants are open at weekends and/or 24 hours a day. As the vast majority of Chinese immigrants are working in restaurants (in some cases, the owners are also the chefs), they do not have time for holidays or common celebrations (e.g. Chinese New Year). Contrary to the Chinese case, Turks manage to elaborate both on internal and external ties. On the one hand, each Friday they are going to the Mosque (after that they usually have informal meetings) and have other places in which to meet each other (e.g. the shopping centre Ibrahim Passage in Vilnius) on the other hand, they are participating in public life. Interaction with the host society: Turkish case In Vilnius, Chinese migration is determined by networks … I know someone, who came here to study. He has wife, she is Lithuanian. He was one of the first immigrants … speaks Russian and Polish.… Friends are very important. It is a question of reliability. It seems that, at least in Vilnius, … networks are the most important thing. Networks, but not diplomas or certificates (28.08.2011, No. E-1). Friends, with whom I spend time, are Lithuanian. I like fishing with Lithuanians … On weekends, usually I spend time with Lithuanians … constantly … by Neris of Elektrenai Lake. If you will look at my address book in my phone, you will find 50 Turkish contacts and the rest … are Lithuanian (14.07.2011, No. R-3).

(Do you usually go to Turkish events?) No, I prefer going fishing (14.07.2011, No. R-3). I do not have many Turkish friends here. Usually, I communicate with Lithuanians… I like to travel around Lithuania. Usually I go to Klaipėda, Palanga, Tauragė, Druskininkai … (26.05.2011, No. R-2). I play football with Turks … twice a week. Once … with Turks, Spanish … foreigners … The other time with locals… Lithuanians. I have my own team also. Every week we play in the Sunday League (26.05.2011/18.08.2011, No. R-1). Yes, usually we meet each other (Turkish immigrants from mixed marriages). It is not because of mixed families. Just … there are no others … than mixed families. Others are not coming to Lithuania. At least I do not know such cases… Once or twice in two months … Half of our friends are Lithuanian, half Turkish (09.06.2011, No. R-4). We do not spend time with friends … due to my wife as she does not like to spend time with others … friends. Usually, we spend time together. Once a fortnight … we go to Alytus, to her parents’ place. We spend weekends there. Sometimes they come to see us. Sometimes we meet my Turkish friends … Due to my work … I communicate with Turks and Arabs. On Fridays, I go to Mosque … communicating with Muslims. For example, on Fridays, after Mosque … we spend time together (9.06.2011, No. R-5).

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I play football in the Sunday League. I spend my free time either with my family or playing football. Usually, I do not spend time with friends, only if it is related to my business. I have some friends, we communicate with families. Five or six families … usually we go to the sauna, the lake … (09.08.2011, No. R-9). I have friends … there are only a few Turks among them... Usually I spend my free time with Lithuanians. I have a child; he is two and a half years old. It is more interesting to spend time with him than with others. I do not have free time. If I have, I relax with my family. Or ... we go to the lake (09.08.2011, No. R-10). I know many Lithuanians ... because I have a business. I have to know Lithuanians. I live here ... I have to communicate... Usually (if it is not related to entrepreneurship), I spend my time with Turkish friends (10.08.2011, No. R-11). Interaction with the host society: Chinese case They do not have time … They cannot leave their restaurants. All the time … they are working. They cannot leave it … even for one day (28.08.2011, No. E-1).

Do you (and your family) have friends among Chinese immigrants which live in Lithuania? If yes, in what kind of circumstances have you met them? On what kind of occasions do you usually meet them? What do you usually do during the meetings? I have few friends. We do meet each other, but very rarely. We watch basketball, drink beer… I know them since I worked in a restaurant in Vilnius (18.07.2011, No. R-1). Of course I have. Some friends I know since university. Also, my chefs in the restaurant … they are also my friends. We meet each other after work. We drink beer, talk … go fishing (15.07.2011, No. R-2). Yes, but at the moment I do not have time (17/18.07.2011, No. R-7).

Do you (and your family) have friends among Lithuanians? If yes, in what kind of circumstances have you met them? On what kind of occasions do you usually meet them? What do you usually do during the meetings? No, I do not have any Lithuanian friends (18.07.2011, No. R-1; 25.05.2011, No. R-5; 15.07.2011, 15.07.2011, No. R-2). Yes, I have. Through my wife… We meet each other, and go travelling together (22/23.05.2011, No. R-4). Of course I have. I am very communicative person… (20.06.2011, No. R-6). Yes, even more than among the Chinese immigrants (17/18.07.2011, No. R-7).

The analysis of the main indicators, which disclose the peculiarities of Chinese and Turkish immigration (grounds for arrival and legal status, social and demographic characteristics, the shift of socio-economic status, entrepreneurial and family-based activities, social networks and integration obstacles) evidences existing links between preimmigration (the environment where the decision to migrate was made) and postimmigration processes (individual/collective integration experiences) as individual migration motives (in the country of origin) determine the integration processes (in country of destination). The initial networks (family or entrepreneurial-based), which are usually acquired together with immigration experience and initial socio-economic environment in 45


Lithuania, determine entrepreneurial-based activities; moreover, they determines further processes related to social developments of Chinese and Turkish immigrant groups, including social ties within and outside of ethnic kinship and direct contacts with Lithuanian society. However, the analysis of the social networks of Chinese and Turkish immigrants showed a few important features. Firstly, it is too early to discuss the internal social networks (within an immigrant group). Even though the number of Chinese and Turks in Lithuania is small, immigrants usually arrive in different socio-economic environments as their immigration is triggered by different factors. Secondly, on the one hand, the last factor in the decision to migrate is determined by different types of networks; on the other hand, the

very

last

socio-economic

position

of

the

immigrant

groups

analysed

is

entrepreneurship. The last-mentioned trend allows discussion about more elaborate rational (entrepreneurial-based) networks rather than the strong and organised internal social networks within immigrant (both Chinese and Turkish) group. However, Turkish immigrants tend to establish social networks with Lithuanian society due to family immigration; while with this regard, the Chinese could be characterised as a group with elaborate entrepreneurial-based networks in Klaipeda on the one hand, and without a strong character of any kind of network in Vilnius (or individual integration experiences) on the other hand. The last-mentioned argument could be illustrated by the participation of Chinese and Turkish immigrants in public life (both, in collective events organised by such institutions as embassies, immigrant organisations and non-governmental organisation). In both (the Chinese and Turkish) cases, there are businessmen and other type of associations,48 which stimulate trading and economic activities between Lithuania and the countries of origin of the immigrant groups analysed (Turkey and China). With regards to other types of organisations (contrary to the Turkish case of Balturka49), there are no similar Chinese immigrant organisations in Lithuania.50 48

The Lithuania–China Trade Association, the Chinese Businessmen Association in Lithuania, the Turkish Businessmen Association in Lithuania. 49 According to Avcı and Kirişci (2006: 124–125), “The role of Turkish migrant associations and their linkages to Turkey have important political implication both in terms of both Turkey and the receiving countries. Many migrants are involved in political activities that influence and transcend both Turkey and the countries they live in”. However, the activities of immigrant organisations (which, actually, due to their activities could not be considered as immigrant organisations) in Lithuania on the one hand, and peculiarities of the social networking of Turkish immigrants on the other hand show, that patterns of organisation of Turkish immigrants are not institutionalised (though, preconditions for such kind of activities could be observed). Though, networks between Turkish organisations (or between members of organisations) are strong. 50 There are other organisations (or institutions), which activities are related to the Chinese and Turkish culture (language, history, cultural studies, other). However, such organisations (as the Chinese Culture Centre, Yesevi Turkish Language and Culture Centre at the Vilnius Pedagogical University, the Turkish

46


While compensating for the lack of immigrant organisations, the Turkish and Chinese embassies are involved in organising collective events, meetings and celebrations (from Turkish days in Vilnius to celebration of the Chinese New Year). Such events are also initiated by the above-mentioned organisations (Balturka or businessmen associations). However, according to the research findings, the participation of immigrants (especially small- or medium-scale entrepreneurs and their family members) in different types of collective events is limited due to various reasons. In the Turkish case, circumstances related to immigrants (and their families) lifestyle, more (or less) elaborated social networks within Lithuanian society, more (or less) conservative (or liberal) religious beliefs, the agenda with relation to (family) business and other types of economic activities predominate. In the Chinese case, the participation in events is determined by geographical aspect (as big part of the Chinese is residing in Klaipeda) to a lesser extent, and to an entrepreneurial-related agenda to a greater extent. However, the lack of social contacts from the perspective of embassies and organisations is also observed. Turkish immigrant organisations Yes, those … businessmen association … those people who have been studying here for a long time ago. Also … plus other people … but they are familiar with each other as all of them they came as students… in order to stay here … or leave… (23.05.2011, No. R-8). Participation in collective events: the Chinese and Turks New Year … also, other events, which are related to religion. Usually, they do not go. A few times they did go … They are said … well, we went there once and this is enough. However, in their houses … they have all the talismans related to their religion (29.08.2011, No. E-2). I have never been. I do not like places where many people are meeting. The Embassy invitation is tempting but we cannot leave our company (15.07.2011, No. R-3). We are not going to such events. We cannot leave our business as we are working until 10 in the evening (18.08.2011, No. R-14).

However, there are individual immigration and integration experiences, where family and entrepreneurial-based networks are not playing an important role. However, such experiences are fragmented and rare. Individual and collective integration experiences The Chinese families communicate in Chinese; while in cases where one of the spouses is Lithuanian … they tend to communicate in Lithuanian (29.08.2011, No. E-2).

Language Centre and the Centre of Oriental Studies at Vilnius University) could not be considered as immigrant (immigrant-related) organisations. However, some of these centres (especially Turkish) are seeking to establish co-operational networks with newly arriving students.

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I am alone here. I arrived four years ago. Five years ago my wife died. So, I have decided to go somewhere abroad. It was hard on me … I thought that if I will go somewhere, life will become better. I am enjoying living here (26.05.2011, No. R-2).

*** The last important aspect, which is included in the theoretical framework – structure (immigration and integration policies, socio-economic developments of countries of origin and destination) – allowed to disclose the structural factors of immigration and integration processes of Chinese and Turkish immigrants. While disclosing the importance of structure for social developments of Chinese and Turkish immigrant groups, policy analysis and analysis of immigrants’ attitudes towards immigration policies in Lithuania were implemented in the research. According to the research findings, the importance of the factors analysed is multiple as, on the one hand, the socio-economic developments of countries (of origin and destination) could not be considered as an important factor of Chinese and Turkish immigration to Lithuania (as migration is triggered by different factors such as institutional and social networks); on the other hand, immigration and integration policies (from the perspective of immigrants) are considered as significant immigration and integration obstacles. On the one hand, policy analysis evidences the absence of a longterm-based approach towards immigration policy and the lack of migrant integration measures,51 on the other hand, the majority of respondents emphasised strict administrative regulations with regards to family reunion, issuance of residence permits and strict rules for establishing a business (for foreigners). However, looking at the processes of how the above-mentioned obstacles were resolved, social networks should be emphasised. In the case of Turkish immigration (those who came as family members), it was resolved with the assistance of family members; while in a case of other Turks (who came as entrepreneurs) and the majority of Chinese, the processes analysed were (and, in some particular cases, still are) considered as one of the main integration obstacles. Attitudes towards immigration policies To a larger extent this deals with documents. All of them (the Chinese) are complaining about the system… while residence permits – other aspect… As some state, conditions are very strict, comparing with other European countries… Taxes are big. Everything is controlled by different inspections… They are not allowing to live normally… (29.08.2011, No. E-2). 51

The specific general approach towards migration issues in Lithuania is related to the situation that has been characteristic to many Eastern European countries: huge emigration flows, high unemployment level and international migration trends have determined the fact that Lithuania did not become immigration country, while immigration and migrant integration processes – underlying part of policy agenda.

48


<… My daughter is living in China. She cannot come here. Four times we have tried… We prepared different documents, but the embassy told that we cannot … without any explanation. I think that one person who will pay taxes and work here … is an advantage for Lithuania. If she would come here … (15.07.2011, No. R-3).

Conclusions The dynamics of immigration of the groups analysed correspond to the total immigration of foreigners. However, gender and concentration of Chinese and Turkish immigrants are those aspects, which are falling out of the context of general immigration trends. Gender aspect with regard to total immigration is not as significant as in the case of Chinese and Turkish immigrant groups; while the concentration of the Chinese and Turkish immigrants in Lithuanian municipalities (which is more significant compared with the general concentration of foreigners) shows that in the case of Chinese immigration, the three biggest cities could be considered as immigration centres with the emphasis on the capital Vilnius. In the case of Turkish immigration, Vilnius is considered as the main immigration centre with 73% Turkish immigrants residing there. Official data on immigration statistics should be considered with reservation as qualitative research provides a broader perspective on the real immigration volumes. This argument could be illustrated by internal migration within the EU, when, for example, Turkish immigrants arrive to Lithuania from the other EU member states (Sweden of Germany) without registration in statistical data base. With regard to the immigration of Chinese and Turkish students and entrepreneurs following the collapse of the Soviet Union, some conclusions can be drawn. Firstly, both types of immigration were linked to each other. Therefore, individual mobility factors at the beginning of both immigration processes were interconnected. Secondly, though the ‘first’ Chinese and Turkish immigration flows to Lithuania were minor, individual mobility was determined by different (macro, meso and micro) factors. However, this research pointed to students’ immigration having a greater impact on further immigration strategies and social development trajectories of other (potential) Chinese and Turkish immigrants. Finally, it can be assumed that the immigration of both students and entrepreneurs could begin at the same time. However, Chinese and Turkish students managed to gain a foothold in Lithuania by establishing migrant organisations and successful businesses, 49


and, at the same time, to create a background of immigration continuity. Thus, a migration network started to be developed. According to research findings, it had significant impact on Chinese and Turkish immigration trends, and later on, the social development of the immigrant groups analysed. Considering the fact that the ‘first immigrants’ came as students, there is a strong potential for permanent residency and broad spectrum of social and economic activities in Lithuania. This fact allows discussing about diverse context of integration and a shift in socio-economic status of those Chinese and Turks, who arrived in Lithuania after collapse of Soviet Union and who have stayed in the country up to the present day. Many examples, which illustrate a shift in socio-economic status, were identified. Following examples could be considered as trends: from a student to an entrepreneur, from a labour immigrant to an entrepreneur, from family member to an entrepreneur (to a greater extent); while from small-scale entrepreneurship to ownership of large companies, from a student to the co-founder of migrant organisation and an entrepreneur, to a lesser extent. Unlike student immigration, entrepreneurship and family-based immigration is more diverse as in the decision to migrate macroeconomic circumstances are not as crucial as social networks. In the Chinese case, the decision to migrate is determined by such factors as migration networks (e.g. ethnic kinship and social ties between entrepreneurs in Lithuania and potential immigrants in China). In the Turkish case, the decision to migrate is determined by entrepreneurial-based networks and family networks (with rational choice as follow up). It seems that individual mobility of Chinese and Turks is determined by structural factors. However, the final factor on which the decision to migrate is based is social. Contrary to the ‘first immigration’ stream, general Chinese and Turkish immigration trends evidence the complexity of immigration, which has a significant impact on integration processes. The main immigration channel for Chinese immigrants is entrepreneurship; while for Turks, it is family reunion (student immigration is also existing trend of immigration, but to a lesser extent). However, the last socio-economic position is entrepreneurship and this status is achieved differently by each group. The process of achievement of this status could be considered as process of social development.

50


In the Turkish case, family migration determines a relatively simple integration context as immigrants arrive in an environment where an informal infrastructure for integration is already in place. Moreover, family migration determines other important aspects of integration, including economic ties with regards to entrepreneurship to a lesser extent, and social networks with ethnic kinship and society in general to a greater extent. Those who arrive as entrepreneurs (or labour immigrants) are usually invited by Turkish entrepreneurs who are generally trying to assist with integration obstacles. Therefore, Turkish migrant workers (in the context of Turkish entrepreneurship in Lithuania) arrive in an environment with (to a certain extent) existing social networks. Contrary to Turkish immigrants, the majority of Chinese arrive as entrepreneurs. They face different integration obstacles to the Turks. The Chinese usually also arrive in an environment with social networks (as they are invited by other Chinese, who usually are trying to assist in different circumstances). In the Chinese case, social networks are embedded either in the initial environment of immigration,52 or (to a greater extent) in the migrantsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; individual immigration and integration experiences. Entrepreneurial-based networks of Chinese and Turkish immigrants converge with networks related to the informal infrastructure of integration. It means, that assistance with regard to employment, housing, visas or residence permits is usually related either to labour relations, or co-operational ties between entrepreneurs and/or potential immigrants. Family networks are playing important role in developing Turkish and Chinese entrepreneurship in Lithuania. However, family networks of Turkish immigrants could be discussed in the context of society in general (family migration); while Chinese family networks â&#x20AC;&#x201C; in the context of family business (entrepreneurial-based migration). The research disclosed existing links between pre-immigration (the environment where the decision to migrate was made) and post-immigration processes (individual/collective integration experiences) of Chinese and Turkish immigrants as individual migration motives (in the country of origin) determine the integration processes (in country of destination). The initial networks (family or entrepreneurial-based), which are usually acquired together with immigration experience and initial socio-economic environment in Lithuania, determine entrepreneurial-based activities; moreover, they determines further 52

Usually, social networks are determined by immigration experiences (between those who arrived together or between Chinese who invited and who received invitation).

51


processes related to social developments of Chinese and Turkish immigrant groups, including social ties within and outside of ethnic kinship and direct contacts with the society in general. Even though the number of Chinese and Turks in Lithuania is small, social networks (within an immigrant groups) are diverse as immigrants usually arrive in different socioeconomic environments and their immigration is triggered by different factors. On the one hand, the last factor in the decision to migrate is determined by different types of networks; on the other hand, the very last socio-economic position of the immigrant groups analysed is entrepreneurship. The last-mentioned trend allows discussion about more elaborate rational (entrepreneurial-based) networks rather than the strong and organised internal social networks within immigrant groups. However, Turkish immigrants tend to establish social networks with Lithuanian society due to family migration; while with this regard, the Chinese could be characterised as a group with elaborated entrepreneurial-based networks in Klaipeda on the one hand, and without a strong character of any kind of network in Vilnius on the other hand. With regards to Chinese immigration, it is too early to discuss even the preconditions for ethnic economy to emerge due following reasons: small number of immigrants; strict labour immigration policy or strict regulations of employment of non EU citizen (especially it is relevant in cases of language obstacle, when Chinese are owners or restaurants); deconcentration of Chinese immigrants in the city as due to competitive factor, Chinese immigrants are establishing business in those places without any Chinese restaurants (usually, Chinese live near their restaurants); relatively weak social networks (especially in Vilnius). Turkish immigrants can be characterised by stronger (compared with Chinese in Vilnius) social networks as family (in mixed marriages) and entrepreneurial-based networks (to a greater extent) and migrant organisations (to a lesser extent) determine stronger potential to establish social networks both within immigrant group and society in general. The exploration of immigration and the social development processes of Chinese and Turkish immigrants in the context of the migration theories showed that the patterns of the processes which were analysed cannot be explained using only pull or push factors, which are the basics of the Neoclassical Migration Theory. It evidences the importance of 52


approaches which are embedded in Migration Network Theory and the Theory of Migration Systems as these theories focus on the peculiarities of migration and integration processes while treating them as an integral part of life and a continuing social process of contemporary societies. This research showed that Chinese and Turkish immigration and social development processes are embedded in the societal rules and social networks in the countries (and societies) of origin and destination. Migration Network and Migration Systems Theories validate the approach of the analysis of social ties and migrant networking; especially within such groups as Chinese and Turks, where motives for immigration to Lithuania are embedded in the meso level of migration (rather than determined by macroeconomic circumstances). On the one hand, this research highlighted a broad spectrum of Chinese and Turkish immigration processes with an emphasis on different types of networks; on the other hand, it defined how social ties embedded within and outside of the Chinese and Turkish immigrant group can have an impact on the patterns of migratory behaviour, and subsequently on the choice of the country of destination. Research showed, that the beginning of immigration of Chinese and Turkish students and entrepreneurs to Lithuania was determined by factors which are embedded in macro (lower cost of third-level education, economic circumstances following the collapse of the Soviet Union), meso (activities of migrant organisations and informal or institutional networks) and micro (individual mobility factors and life strategies) levels of migration. It is not surprising that the social development processes of the immigrant groups analysed were diverse, had a broad spectrum of social and economic activities and finally, a larger immigration potential, which, according to social migration theories, could be considered as the continuity of (Chinese and Turkish) immigration. The relative brevity of contemporary immigration history in Lithuania and the fact that Chinese and Turkish immigrants have just started to â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;discoverâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; Lithuania as a country of destination, the atypical nature of the immigration experiences and the scenarios of social development of the immigrant groups analysed shows a specific immigration context in Lithuania on the one hand, and more complex Chinese and Turkish immigration experiences and trajectories in Europe on the other hand. It means that new migration trends in CEE after enlargement of the EU in 2004 has brought new patterns of migration,

53


which (regardless of its scale) should be considered as part of international migration network. The analysis of statistical data showed that considering the current trends in Chinese and Turkish immigration to Lithuania, it is too early to discuss the economic impact of the immigrant groups analysed on the Lithuanian economy and society as the number of Chinese and Turkish immigrants is particularly low. However, this research showed that the vast majority of immigrants from China and Turkey are working as entrepreneurs. Thus, they are creating new working environments and new preconditions for an â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;ethnic economyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; to emerge. These preconditions can be illustrated by strong entrepreneurialbased and labour-related networks among Chinese and/or Turkish immigrant groups. These networks could be considered as transnational with potential to cover both the countries of origin and destination (and, in particular cases, the country of transit or temporary residence). However, the economic impact of Chinese and Turkish immigration on the Lithuanian economy and society can be considered from the perspective of macroeconomic conditions (in Lithuania as a country of destination) and labour immigration policies. Experiences in 2006â&#x20AC;&#x201C;2008 showed that the success of the economy has a strong potential to increase labour-related immigration (especially from China and Turkey). Together with the increase of Chinese and Turkish labour immigration (with consideration of strong entrepreneurial-based and labour-related networks), the potential for permanent residence within these immigrant groups might increase as well. It means that at this stage of Chinese and Turkish immigration to Lithuania, the discussions should be framed around the impact of the Lithuania economy on labour-related immigration from China and Turkey (rather than the economic impact of Chinese and Turkish immigration on the Lithuanian economy).

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18. Stark, O. The Migration of Labour. Basil Blackwell, Cambridge, 1991. 19. Tilly, C. & Brown, C.H. On Uprooting, Kinship, and Auspices of Migration. International Journal of Comparative Sociology, 1967, 8(2): 139-164. Other 20. Kinų svajonė – savas kvartalas Vilniuje (Chinese dream – Chinatown in Vilnius), 21.11.2007: [http://www.balsas.lt/naujiena/174927/kinu-svajone-savas-kvartalasvilniuje/rubrika:naujienos-lietuva-regionai-vilnius] 21. Belaukiant kinų kvartalo (Waiting for Chinatown), 2008.11.26: [http://vz.lt/Default2.aspx?ArticleID=8f6e468e-59cb-4bfb-84ab ab6ceaba98f7&RubricID=00000000-525f-44f8-aff5-1e0e7a73056f] 22. Vilniaus sodus okupuoja kinai (Chinese are occupying Vilnius’ gardens), 2008.05.10: [http://www.alfa.lt/straipsnis/182431/?Vilniaus.sodus.okupuoja.kinai=2008-05-10_10-07] 23. Vilniaus policija vidurnaktį sprendė pusšimčio kinų problemas (In the midnight, Vilnius’ Police was solving problems of 50 Chinese), 14.08.2008: [http://www.15min.lt/naujiena/aktualu/nusikaltimaiirnelaimes/59/2946/] 24. Kinų darbininkai pradeda kelti nerimą (Chinese workers are raising concerns), 06.04.2009: [http://www.ve.lt/?data=2009-04-06&rub=1065924810&id=1238950511] 25. Lietuviai nuomoja kinus (Chinese are hired out by Lithuanians), 31.05.2008: [http://vilniaus.diena.lt/dienrastis/miestas/lie-tu-viai-nuo-mo-ja-ki-nus-114365] 26. Vilniuje – vergų turgus (Slaves’ market in Vilnius), 14.06.2008: [http://vilniaus.diena.lt/dienrastis/miestas/vilniuje-vergu-turgus-114400] 27. Klaipėdos banditai persekioja kinų darbininkus (Chinese workers in Klaipeda are persecuted by bandits), 31.07.2008: [http://www.lrytas.lt/-12174928061216824015-p1kriminalai-klaip%C4%97dos-banditai-persekioja-kin%C5%B3-darbininkus.htm] 28. Migracijos tarnybos akiratyje – darbininkai iš Kinijos (Chinese workers – at the horizon of Migration Services), 18.08.2008: [http://www.15min.lt/naujiena/56/3198/] 29. Kinai okupuoja Panevėžį (Chinese are occupying Panevezys), 11.11.2009: [http://www.delfi.lt/news/daily/world/-.d?id=25580957] 30. Kada Lietuvoje išdygs kinų darbininkų kvartalai? (When Chinatowns will appear in Lithuania?), 17.07.2010: [http://www.delfi.lt/news/economy/business/kada-lietuvoje-isdygskinu-darbininku-kvartalai.d?id=34570713] 31. Turkų jaunikių armija (Turkish groom army), 11.04.2008: [http://www.diena.lt/dienrastis/miestas/turku-jaunikiu-armija-114241]

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Annexes Annex 1. THE LIST OF EXPERTS AND RESPONDENTS No. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9.

E X P E R T S (T U R K I S H) Date Citizenship Notes 16.05.2011 Turkey Anonymised 26.05.2011 Turkey Anonymised 17/26.05.2011 Turkey Anonymised 26.05.2011 Turkey Anonymised 09.06.2011 Turkey Anonymised 01.06.2011 Turkey Anonymised 18.05.2011 Lithuania Anonymised 23.05.2011 Lithuania Anonymised 26.07.2011 Lithuania Anonymised

No. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16.

RESPONDENTS Date Citizenship 18/26.05.2011 Turkey 26.05.2011 Turkey 14.07.2011 Lithuania 09.06.2011 Turkey 09.06.2011 Turkey 27.07.2011 Lithuania 26.07.2011 Turkey 26.07.2011 Lithuania 09.08.2011 Turkey 09.08.2011 Turkey 10.08.2011 Turkey 17.08.2011 Turkey 18.08.2011 Turkey 18.08.2011 Lithuania 18.08.2011 Turkey 22.08.2011 Turkey

No. 1. 2. 3

Date 28.08.2011 29.08.2011 18.01.2012

No. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11.

RESPONDENTS Date Citizenship 18.07.2011 China 15.07.2011 China 15.07.2011 China 22/23.05.2011 China 25.05.2011 China 20.06.2011 China 17/18.07.2011 China 20.07.2011 China 29.08.2011 China 26.09.2011 China 13.02.2012 China

(T U R K I S H) Notes Entrepreneur (anonymised) Entrepreneur (anonymised) Entrepreneur (anonymised) Entrepreneur (anonymised) Assistant (anonymised) Anonymised Works at home (anonymised) Anonymised (anonymised) Entrepreneur (anonymised) Entrepreneur (anonymised) Entrepreneur (anonymised) Anonymised Entrepreneur (anonymised) Entrepreneur (anonymised) Entrepreneur (anonymised) Employee (anonymised)

E X P E R T S (C H I N E S E) Citizenship Notes Lithuania Anonymised Lithuania Anonymised Lithuania Anonymised (C H I N E S E) Notes Entrepreneur (anonymised) Entrepreneur (anonymised) Entrepreneur (anonymised) Entrepreneur (anonymised) Entrepreneur (anonymised) Entrepreneur (anonymised) Entrepreneur (anonymised) Entrepreneur (anonymised) Entrepreneur (anonymised) Entrepreneur (anonymised) Entrepreneur (anonymised)

57


Karolis Žibas Junior researcher/PhD student Lithuanian Social Research Centre Institute for Ethnic Studies A. Goštauto str. 11, LT-01108, Vilnius, Lithuania tel.: +370 5 272 2063, fax: +370 5 275 4896 E-mail: karolis@ces.lt/Web:http://www.ces.lt/

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Immigration Processes in Lithuania: Social developments of Chinese and Turkish immigrant groups  

Immigration Processes in Lithuania: Social developments of Chinese and Turkish immigrant groups by Karolis Žibas ERSTE Foundation Fellowsh...

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