David Weale’s recent Guardian article entitled “Immigration: The Elephant in the Room” generated quite a buzz on social media. When I read his follow-up post stating: “China is proclaiming loudly, and proudly, that they will be the architects of the new global economy, which planning is well underway, and we are part of that plan. And the main envoy of that plan on PEI is Xuan (Frank) Zhou, friend of Chinese billionaires, and of Premier MacLauchlan, and former Premier Robert Ghiz,” I decided to do some digging.
Who exactly is Frank Zhou? As Director of the PEI Association for Newcomers to Canada (PEIANC) from 2000-2010, I got to know Frank Zhou and his wife, Sherry Huang, after she purchased Study Abroad Canada. They’re both lovely people. They’re also wealthy and ambitious entrepreneurs, and key players in a partnership project with the provincial government which is rapidly transforming our Island. It’s impossible to explain this in detail here, so my focus in this article is on some possible conflict-of-interest connections between Frank Zhou and Premier MacLauchlan.
Frank and Sherry operate Sunrise Group; Study Abroad Canada; Anne in China Inc. (AIC); and COWS Creamery (China). Sunrise Group includes: S.M. Capital Management; Sunrise Consulting; Sunrise Logistics; Sunrise Innovation; and Sunrise Immigration and Investment, which is one of seven companies authorized by the provincial government to identify and process immigrants through the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP). Frank is also a board member of the Atlantic Provinces Economic Council (APEC), and was appointed to the UPEI Board of Governors by Robert Ghiz.
Robert Ghiz wrote the “Afterward” to the Chinese edition of Anne, then traveled to China with Frank to promote it. Both Wade and Duncan were Anne in China Inc. partners at the time. Wade’s biography found on the Pierre Eliot Trudeau Foundation website notes that Wade is the Premier of PEI (so it appears to be up-to-date) and that he is a “partner and director of Anne China Inc.” Duncan was a director of the Anne of Green Gables Licensing Authority, and President of Anne in china Inc.
Frank Zhou is also sole owner of the Canada-China Friendship and Goodwill Association, incorporated in January, 2015. The Premier’s 2015 disclosure document states that: “The Premier’s spouse is a director of Canada-China Friendship and Goodwill Association,” but that same information isn’t included in his 2016 disclosure statement, although Duncan was pointed out in the gallery of the Senate in Ottawa and introduced as the Chair of the Board of the Canada-China Friendship and Goodwill Association by Senator Mike Duffy just a few weeks ago on March 1, 2017.
Zhou’s Sunrise Group sponsored Duncan’s “Canada 300” project, and is also a sponsor of the Watermark Theatre, where Wade holds the Mortgage.
Frank and Sherry had two companies on the recent China delegation (COWs Creamery (China); and Study Abroad Canada), and their Sunrise Group of companies is partnered with Canada’s Smartest Kitchen, which was also represented on the trip.
After the Federal government shut down PEI’s PNP program in 2008, which allowed immigrants to essentially buy their way into Canada without having to actually own businesses in PEI, the new PNP program required immigrants to create or purchase Island companies. To continue collecting administration fees ($10,000 per application) as well as failed deposits ($18 million in 2016) the province is now actively promoting the sale of PEI companies with a link to a database of Island businesses for sale entitled Buy or Sell a PEI Business accompanied with guidelines entitled Selling your Business to a Newcomer, found on the Office of Immigration’s website next to the links to PNP application forms.
Few Islanders are asking questions about the rapid transfer of Island-owned businesses to foreign buyers for fear of being labelled xenophobic. But a growing number are becoming concerned. We urgently need to have an open and candid discussion about what an appropriate immigration strategy for PEI should look like. We put measures in place restricting foreign acquisition of land back in the 1970s when we became aware that Americans were rapidly buying large tracts of land in PEI, especially shore frontage, so why are we not equally concerned about the rapid sale of PEI’s businesses and economic infrastructure? Our government needs to address this run-away problem before the “For Sale” sign on PEI changes to “Sold.” The steady provincial government revenue stream coming from investor-class immigrants, and the close connections between Wade, Duncan and Frank Zhou, may explain why the Premier seems unconcerned.
I am concerned about the 2nd Buddhist group buying 120 acres of shorefront on the Brudenell river
This is an excellent piece of investigative journalism and goes where mere mortals fear to tread. Sadly most Islanders have no perception of what is taking place. If these reports are true, and I have little reason to believe otherwise, there seems to be several conflicts of interest here and they should be addressed.
Islanders should be completely alarmed at what is taking place in our Island. If we do not wake up soon it will be to late. The rapid rate of Chinese Immigrants buying up Island business establishments is so very alarming and before long we will all be working for these immigrants instead of our own Government making opportunities available for Islanders to be able to purchase a business. The corruption which exists within this Liberal Government is so extensive that only a independent public inquiry would have any chance of establishing the truth concerning these outrageous matters.
“Few Islanders are asking questions about the rapid transfer of Island-owned businesses to foreign buyers for fear of being labelled xenophobic. But a growing number are becoming concerned.” excerpt from above……….interesting to say the least!!!!!!
Good information and it seems that the China Syndrome is alive on a number of fronts, worrying about being labelled is just ” smoke “……it is probably no small coincidence that Vancouver, Toronto and PEI are being landing points for either Chinese Immigrants/ Business men/ Property as they are on both coasts as a way of entry…..We hear that many deal in ” cash ” and are quite wealthy…….controls now are being placed on Immigrants regarding housing and having Canadians first being given the opportunity and taxing those who come to buy the high priced properties…..The Government of Canada and Ontario and BC are waking up to the call of Canadian citizens and first time home owners not being able to compete with the Wealthy……….With “Wade Who” being involved and totally into himself and his group their sole interest is in their wealth increase and for their own minions…….so corruption breeds corruption and I will bet you that the trail is hot and probably similar situations are at hand in PEI ……….I do not care who or where the Immigrants are from they should not displace Canadian Citizens because of their money………This is a serious issue that is losing ” Oversight “….keep digging here Mr Kevin Arsenault …………Canadians should be first and not displaced in any Housing Opportunity due to income preference by other Weatlhy Canadians whose goal is to encourage this offshort Business………..I am sure Tax opportunities abound also……….