On October 20, 2023, the Chinese community in Suriname celebrated a momentous milestone – 170 years of Chinese immigration to the country. This significant occasion was marked by a spectacular parade featuring over 30 beautifully decorated floats and contributions from various cultural groups, making it an unforgettable day. Rosebel Gold Mines (RGM), as part of the Zijin Mining Group, enthusiastically joined the parade with 35 participants, underlining the company’s active involvement in the celebration. Notably, RGM is currently the largest Chinese employer in Suriname.
The history of Chinese immigration in Suriname dates back to October 20, 1853, when the ship “De Merwede” arrived, carrying 14 Chinese men. This early migration was part of an experiment related to the impending abolition of slavery in 1863, and these individuals were settled in Catharina Sophia in the Coronie district. The influx of Chinese immigrants continued, with the frigate sailing ship “Minister Pahud” bringing 257 Chinese men on April 18, 1858, and three days later, the ship “De Drie Gezusters” arrived with 243 more Chinese men. The month of April 1858 witnessed the arrival of a total of 500 Chinese men in Suriname, marking the beginning of a growing Chinese presence in the country.
To commemorate this enduring legacy of Chinese immigration, a monument was erected on October 20, 2008, designed by artist Paul Woei and unveiled by then President Runaldo Venetiaan. This monument has since become a significant symbol of the celebration of Chinese Immigration Day, highlighting the enduring cultural contributions of the Chinese community in Suriname.
Notably, RGM’s participation in the parade underscores the company’s commitment to celebrating and expressing the cultural diversity that has enriched Suriname’s heritage. RGM stands proudly as a part of the Zijin Mining Group, contributing to the legacy of the Chinese community in Suriname.