The Lusaka City Council (LCC) has banned Chinese from conducting retail business in poultry and vegetables at the New Soweto Market. LCC director of housing and social services Danny Chibinda said the decision was made following complaints from local traders that the Chinese were selling the same commodities at a lower price than them.
Mr Chibanda told the Parliamentary Committee on the National Economy, Trade and Labour Matters which visited the market on Saturday to validate claims that the Chinese are dealing in retail and wholesale businesses at the expense of the traders. “We don’t allow Chinese traders in the market. But there are also some elements of some of our people who are dealing in goods we do not allow,” he said. And Zambia National Marketeers Credit Association president Mupila Kameya said the Chinese should not be allowed to sell finished products.
Mr Kameya said while the Chinese are good at manufacturing, they should be restricted so that Zambians also take part in the production process. And committee chairperson Situmbeko Musokotwane said the committee will present the concerns raised to Parliament to ensure fair trade between the local people and foreigners. Dr Musokotwane said China is the world’s second largest economy which most developing countries cannot do without. He said there is need to come up with a solution that will make trading beneficial to both parties.
“China is the number two economy in the world, and we cannot do without it. The issues market traders raised are on the need to ensure Zambia and China benefit,” Dr Musokotwane said. The committee was also informed that LCC is investigating reports that some Zambians sell products on behalf of the Chinese in the market