Chengdu attracts more expats who live like locals
Global Times


A foreign student studying in Chengdu, Southwest China's Sichuan Province, plays with a peg-top. (Photo: VCG)

With more foreigners coming to China and choosing to live here, getting involved in the activities of the residential communities where they live is a good way they can become familiar with the environment and feel at home.

Chen Jiajing comes from Kuala Lumpur of Malaysia. He has been living in Tongzilin residential community of Chengdu, Southwest China's Sichuan Province.

According to Chengdu Daily, aside from Beijing and Shanghai, Chengdu has become one of the favorite Chinese cities for foreigners to stay. There are more than 4,300 foreigners living in Tongzilin residential community in Wuhou district in Chengdu, one of the popular areas for foreigners.

Many foreigners settle in Chengdu due to the attractiveness of the culture and foreigner-friendly lifestyle in the city. In June 2017, the public security bureau of Chengdu launched 15 policies to facilitate foreign talent working or living in Chengdu, according to the Xinhua News Agency.

Statistics released by Chengdu in February 2018 show that the city has 17,411 foreigners holding a residence permit.

Chen became the assistant of the director of the community at the beginning of this year. His daily work includes helping expats deal with various problems regarding employment, visa registration, and accommodation of visiting relatives.

Chen is also responsible for making door-to-door visits to better understand foreign residents' needs and hear advice for improving his work.

"The door-to-door visit way is a novelty. Now more and more people know me and they are willing to turn to me for help… partly because I am good at communicating and partly because the residential community is more open and various kinds of activities have brought us closer," Chen was quoted in Chengdu Daily.

Chen has helped foreign teachers for voluntary blood donation and arranging for voluntary English-teaching classes for children in the community. "My work is to help residents in the community who come from different cultures to live a better life and better understand each other," he said.

Tongzilin residential community also has a center. Aside from dealing with governmental affairs such as visa registrations and driving license applications, the center holds activities like showing movies and offering classes on calligraphy or baking.

"The Tongzilin residential community has become a platform for cultures at home and abroad," Chen said, noting that Chengdu, like many other cities in China, is working on becoming an international city.