China Passes Mexico as #1 Source of California Immigrants

AP Photo/Mark Schiefelbein, File
AP Photo/Mark Schiefelbein, File

China has officially replaced Mexico as the country sending the highest number of immigrants to California. India is right behind the Middle Kingdom, however, and is also poised to overtake Mexico based on sheer data.

According to the Sacramento Bee, data acquired from the U.S. Census Bureau and the Public Policy Institute of California indicates that about 33,000 immigrants moved to California from China last year, roughly triple the number who came in 2005.

The Bee also notes that the number of immigrants coming to California from Mexico fell by roughly 70 percent in 2014. The Bee notes that last year marked the second in a row that more residents arrived in California from China than from Mexico and that India sent about 29,500 immigrants to California last year.

Much of this influx and change in demographic can be attributed to the fact that colleges are accepting foreign students in much higher numbers because they pay much more.

Congress’s H-1B (or high-skilled workers) visa program, which currently hands out approximately 85,000 visas to high-tech workers using a lottery format each year, also plays a pivotal role.

However, U.S. census figures also reportedly indicate that the growth in Asian migration is a relatively young trend and that Hispanics still far outnumber Asians in California, and likely will for a long time. About 5.3 million Asians live in California compared with 15 million Hispanics, census figures show.

Follow Adelle Nazarian on Twitter @AdelleNaz and on Facebook.



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