Friday, April 25, 2008

Will China be the donor who cares?

Interesting quick take on Chinese – African relations from Africa-Asia Confidential:

When China evacuated 400 construction workers from Mongomo in Equatorial Guinea in early April, it marked the culmination of a labour dispute with a difference. In several African countries, notably Zambia and Congo-Kinshasa, Chinese companies have been criticised for their treatment of local staff. In other African countries, like Sudan, Ethiopia and Nigeria, Chinese technical staff have been kidnapped by dissident groups. But in Equatorial Guinea the tension was generated by the local authorities clashing with labourers imported from China.


Angry African said...

Not all Chinese companies are bad. My experience as a trade unionist in South Africa has taught me that they are more likely to exploit than others - especially in clothing and textile. But not all are bad. But it makes it difficult to judge. From and employer side they are worse on average than others. But the jury is out if they are worse as an investor or donor.

Africa Flak said...

It's a good point. Living in one of the few African countries still doing business with Taiwan, I don't see much of the supposed "Chinese onslaught" of the continent. I do think, however, that Chinese companies are usually made examples of in the Western media because: 1) They are not from the West; and, 2)There are so many of them because China is doing business in places that the Western powers washed its hands of after the end of the Cold War.