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CNN Reports On China In Africa  
User currently offlineAirSpare From United States of America, joined Jun 2006, 589 posts, RR: 5
Posted (7 years 4 months 3 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 2538 times:

A few days ago, CNN International ran a report somewhat critical of how China does business in Africa.

I have been working in telecom for the past few years in Nigeria and Angola and thought I'd make an additional comment.

I have been in Angola since Oct 06 and am amazed at the amount of Chinese funded projects, and the number of common laborers, such as ditch diggars and construction workers.

BS'ing with my driver, I asked why there were so many Chinese and so few Angolans working. He said that they pay dirt, much less then the legal minimum wage, and that the Chinese that are here working are mostly prisoners sent here to work.

Ok, now my driver is not the most reliable source of information, hell, I'm happy when he is on time, would this be a major violation of the WTO and human rights?

There is no freedom of speech here, and for me to try to verify this may not be advisable, should I ask around?

Interestingly, on CNN International, Angola is a major advertiser. Slave labor, building teh world just like the Romans did, cool.


Get someone else for your hero worship fetish
13 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineArrow From Canada, joined Jun 2002, 2676 posts, RR: 2
Reply 1, posted (7 years 4 months 3 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 2516 times:
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This sounds a little far-fetched. Assuming Angola would permit this, why would China send prisoners out of the country as slave labourers? There must be lots for them to do at home, and the consequences of "escapes" in China are much easier to handle than escapes in Angola. Whatever, I wouldn't ask too many questions if I were you.

As for the Chinese funded projects -- get used to it. China is doing this all over the world as they quickly grow towards #1 superpower status. The times they are a' changin'.



Never let the facts get in the way of a good story.
User currently offlineOly720man From United Kingdom, joined May 2004, 6737 posts, RR: 11
Reply 2, posted (7 years 4 months 3 weeks 2 hours ago) and read 2497 times:

http://www.heritage.org/Research/Africa/hl1006.cfm

But Beijing's involvement in Africa also has its critics, including the Africans.

PRC firms underbid local African companies, and Chinese contractors often use cheap, imported Chinese labor. Some contracts require 70 percent Chinese labor, adding little to local employment or skill development.


No mention of prisoners though.



wheat and dairy can screw up your brain
User currently offlineCoal From United States of America, joined Aug 2006, 2049 posts, RR: 9
Reply 3, posted (7 years 4 months 3 weeks 1 hour ago) and read 2478 times:

Interesting topic, and I wish I was not so tired and could really spill my brains out (I just came back from the Singapore JPMorgan Chase Corporate Challenge).

I work in mining. The number one reason why so many Chinese people are going to Africa is to get Africa's resources. I'm not so sure about China sending prisoners to Africa, but I will tell you that it is true that the Chinese will work for dirt, even compared to the Africans! I actually think this is terrible for Africa. You have these multinationals that come in to exploit the land, and the least the Africans could get out of it would be jobs. But no. The jobs, from exploration, to setting up infrastructure, to the actual mining is done by Chinese. They usually have 2-3 year contracts, but a lot of them end up staying in China, to do what Chinese are best at: opening up Chinese take away restaurants! Don't be surprised to find Chinatowns in major African cities like Jo'burg, Dar Es Salaam, Nairobi, and especially in West Africa, like in Accra and Lagos.

Cheers
Coal



Nxt Flts: VA SYD-CBR-SYD | QF SYD-DFW | AA DFW-TLH-MIA-DFW | QF DFW-SYD
User currently offlineVC10BOAC From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 402 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (7 years 4 months 3 weeks 1 hour ago) and read 2459 times:

I was in Freetown, Sierra Leone in 2004 and the Chinese were there too. They do a lot of commercial fishing off-shore. There are also a number of construction projects they are involved in, also with Chinese labor.

One thing I found disturbing though was that they renovated a major luxury hotel that was dammaged during the past civil war. I could not believe my eyes when I visited the hotel. All signs are in english, and... get this... Chinese, the artwork in the rooms and lobby were oriental, etc. There was nothing in the hotel to suggest you were in West Africa.

Most unbelievable was that the electrical outlets on the walls were made for the plugs they use in China while Sierra Leone uses the type of outlets used in Britain. So if you are not from China and want to stay in the hotel you need to bring an adaptor. Even the locals!


User currently offlineYOWza From Canada, joined Jul 2005, 4892 posts, RR: 15
Reply 5, posted (7 years 4 months 3 weeks ago) and read 2449 times:

I highly doubt that the Chinese would use prisoner labor in large amounts around Africa. There may be isolated instances of it. This is how empire building goes in the 21st century. As for this not benefiting Africa (foreign companies bringing in their own work forces as opposed to hiring locals) this is not uncommon among non-Chinese companies. The Malaysians do it as do the Americans - just look at the "Houston Express" that flies oil workers between Houston and Eq. Guinea.

YOWza



12A whenever possible.
User currently offlineAirSpare From United States of America, joined Jun 2006, 589 posts, RR: 5
Reply 6, posted (7 years 4 months 2 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 2439 times:

Quoting YOWza (Reply 5):
"Houston Express"

This is true, but remember the skill sets are quite different what is available locally, and what has to be imported. One of the reasons that I'm here (I live in Brasil, or the States).

I asked again if it was true to a few different people, there is no way to confirm it other then the 4 people that I talked to said this is what they hear to be true.

So it's either an urban legend, or there is some truth to it, I guess we'll never know. But with the minimum wage here at less then USD$100 per month, there has to be a reason that it's cheaper to bring in Chinese to dig ditches then use local labor.



Get someone else for your hero worship fetish
User currently onlineMir From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 21634 posts, RR: 55
Reply 7, posted (7 years 4 months 2 weeks 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 2405 times:

I don't know about prisoner labor, but China is getting seriously involved in Africa, mainly because China can provide public works projects for cheap in exchange for access to Africa's natural resources.

The western world has missed the boat on economic dealings with Africa, and China is more than happy to fill the void.

-Mir



7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
User currently offlineSpringbok747 From Australia, joined Nov 2004, 4387 posts, RR: 10
Reply 8, posted (7 years 4 months 2 weeks 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 2399 times:

I don't think they're sending over prisoners to do all the dirty work, just desperate people who don't have jobs in their own country.

Quoting VC10BOAC (Reply 4):
I was in Freetown, Sierra Leone in 2004 and the Chinese were there too.

I was in Livingstone in Zambia in July 2006, and was surprised to see Chinese labourers repairing the roads on the way to Victoria falls. They were even using machinery and vehicles they had brought straight from China! Wow..for a minute there I thought I was in Asia..haha.



אני תומך בישראל
User currently offlineDeltaGator From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 6341 posts, RR: 13
Reply 9, posted (7 years 4 months 2 weeks 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 2392 times:

Quoting AirSpare (Thread starter):
that the Chinese that are here working are mostly prisoners sent here to work.....would this be a major violation of the WTO and human rights?

Debate on Chinese human rights issues aside. Why do people think making prisoners work is such a bad thing and against their human rights? These folks have shown they can't be a functioning member of society so why not get something out of them? It's better than having them sit around in their cell 23 hours a day an lets them learn somewhat of a trade for when they are claimed to have been rehabilitated?



"If you can't delight in the misery of others then you don't deserve to be a college football fan."
User currently onlineMir From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 21634 posts, RR: 55
Reply 10, posted (7 years 4 months 2 weeks 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 2387 times:

Quoting DeltaGator (Reply 9):
Debate on Chinese human rights issues aside. Why do people think making prisoners work is such a bad thing and against their human rights? These folks have shown they can't be a functioning member of society so why not get something out of them? It's better than having them sit around in their cell 23 hours a day an lets them learn somewhat of a trade for when they are claimed to have been rehabilitated?

I don't think that making prisoners work is a bad thing necessarily, but it should not be a form of rehabilitation, not punishment (i.e. they should be entitled to the same rules on working conditions as normal workers, though not necessarily the same payscale).

-Mir



7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
User currently offlineDeltaGator From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 6341 posts, RR: 13
Reply 11, posted (7 years 4 months 2 weeks 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 2384 times:

Same working conditions I suppose though I'd make it tough on them. Obviously give them water and food but not much else. And I don't believe they should be paid. Any money they could make should be applied in some sort of "funny money" internal accounting to pay for their stay in the Pokey or to payback their victims.


"If you can't delight in the misery of others then you don't deserve to be a college football fan."
User currently onlineMir From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 21634 posts, RR: 55
Reply 12, posted (7 years 4 months 2 weeks 6 days 17 hours ago) and read 2367 times:

Quoting DeltaGator (Reply 11):
Same working conditions I suppose though I'd make it tough on them. Obviously give them water and food but not much else.

I'm not saying it shouldn't be difficult, but it should be reasonable - they should not be worked to death.

-Mir



7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
User currently offlinePbottenb From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 431 posts, RR: 1
Reply 13, posted (7 years 4 months 2 weeks 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 2344 times:

Chinese laborers built much of the infrastructure of the Western United States in the 1800's. The US benefited greatly from their work. It wasnt a sinister thing....I know that things are different now, but Im just sayin....Just because they are Chinese dont mean they are doing bad things...

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