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China plots to deepen Africa ties

By Vision Reporter

Added 22nd February 2011 03:00 AM

CHINA has designed a new strategy where it will re-locate some of its small-and-medium industries to sub-Sahara African as a measure against rising labour cost.

CHINA has designed a new strategy where it will re-locate some of its small-and-medium industries to sub-Sahara African as a measure against rising labour cost.

By Ibrahim Kasita

CHINA has designed a new strategy where it will re-locate some of its small-and-medium industries to sub-Sahara African as a measure against rising labour cost.

The move will help create jobs and transfer of technology, experts say.

“Labour costs in China have been rising. This has increased the cost of manufacturing,” Zhou Xiaoming, the economic and commercial counsel at the Chinese embassy in Kampala, said.

“We plan to relocate small, light industries to undeveloped countries where the cost of labour is low. The economic environment here is also good and competitive, which will allow build business confidence.”

Xioaming explained that the “new” industries would create jobs for the local people and spur investments in Africa, creating a stable and sustainable economic growth.

“The move will foster human resource capacity building and transfer of skills through training, which is needed to develop Africa,” he said.

The low-cost factories are labour-intensive and cheap to run. They make goods like casual clothes, toys and simple electronics that do not need highly-educated workers.

This type of industries cannot be affected by unreliable power supply and the poor transportation systems common in many sub-Sahara countries, he said.

The strategy is designed to demonstrate that Sino-Africa economic and trade ties are a major component of mutual benefit and reciprocity.

China has already announced “special action” to crackdown counterfeiters and control export of sub-standard goods to Uganda and around Africa.

The measures will include restricting movements of persons involved in making fake products, prosecuting them and revoking their production licences if they can be traced back to China.

The Uganda private sector welcomed the strategy, calling it an “opportunity to study, learn and compete.”

“We are excited that China has accepted to re-locate their industries to Africa. This will help us build human capacity and skills required for business to grow and compete,” Gideon Badgawa, the Private Sector Foundation of Uganda chief, said.

“The private sector is engine to economic development, but they cannot create jobs without skills. China is a giant. We need the expertise and the know-how from them to grow.”

China, in its “Eight-Point Plan,” pledged to launch the Sino-Africa science and technology partnership plan, and carry out 100 joint research and demonstration projects.

Beijing also pledged to give zero-tariff treatment to 95% of exports from least developed countries in Africa that have diplomatic relations with China.



China plots to deepen Africa ties

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