Business forum raps Chinese

The Manicaland Business Forum has launched an attack on Chinese investors in Zimbabwe accusing them of “looting of diamond proceeds and unacceptable labour practices”.

This follows the direct invitation to Chinese investors recently by the Minister of State for Manicaland, Christopher Mushohwe.

“As a country we sought to attract investment from China to counter de-industrialisation in the province after the closure of many of our companies,” he said.

A 12-member delegation from the Chinese government and industry was in the province last week, led by vice chairman of the Anhui Provincial Committee and president of the Anhui Federation of Industry and Commerce, Weihua Li.

The MBF Vice Chairman Bernard Muusha said: “ Yes we welcome Foreign Direct Investment but we want accountability and transparency in the way the diamonds are being mined at Chiadzwa by the Chinese. We also want them to maintain acceptable labour practices. We are concerned with issues of governance and accountability by the Chinese.”

Recently there were wildcat strikes at several Chinese-run business ventures. Zimbabwean workers employed by various Chinese investors have downed their tools, protesting against bad labour practices ranging from physical abuse to irregular working hours and low wages.

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