Why Jet Li is making Singapore home

Source:Global Times Published: 2009-6-21 22:09:59

According to a recent report, well-known Chinese action star Jet Li has taken up Singapore citizenship and bought property in the country worth $14 million.
Some people said it was Singapore’s favorable policies toward celebrities and its agreeable living environment that appeal to Jet Li. However, the United States also has preferential policies to attract talent and the environment there is also very nice. Why did Li, who still held a US green card last year, choose to become a Singapore citizen?

There are several reasons. Li has a much stronger sense of identity in Singapore than in the US. First, almost 80 percent of the population in Singapore is Chinese, while Chinese in the US only account for 1 percent of the total population. Although Li has done well in Hollywood, he cannot enter Hollywood’s mainstream. In Singapore, he will enjoy better and wider recognition and greater influence than in the US.

Second, Li believes in Buddhism. About 31 percent of Singapore’s population is Buddhist. When living in Singapore, Li will feel more comfortable with the religious and cultural aura there.

Last but not the least, Li is now devoted to his “One Foundation,” a charity project under the Red Cross Society of China. It calls for each person to donate one yuan ($0.14) per month to assist people in urgent need of help. The project is aimed to serve Chinese and has little influence in the US. The Singaporean government has voiced its support for Li’s “One Foundation.” Now Li is planning to open an office of his project in Singapore.

No matter which citizenship Li chose, he is still a Chinese in many people’s eyes and deserves our respect for his contribution to China and its people.


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