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Tourists look out at Victoria Harbour in Hong Kong, China, on May 1.
Tourists look out at Victoria Harbour in Hong Kong, China, on May 1.
(Brent Lewin/Bloomberg)

DOUG SAUNDERS

How Canadian are Hong Kong’s 300,000 Chinese-Canadians?

Her parents emigrated from China to Canada. She grew up in Vancouver, speaking Chinese and English, and now she’s moved to Hong Kong, where she’s bought an apartment and is working full-time for a Chinese company.

What do you call such people? Some would say they’re fully Chinese, without any Canadian identity, but happen to possess a Canadian passport of convenience. The parents used Vancouver or Toronto as a launch pad to become an “astronaut family” with “satellite kids,” located in Canada but rooted to China. The suggestion that there are thousands of such people, legally Canadian but with no ties, is central to the Harper government’s proposed immigration reforms.