Follow CAP on Social Media

Listen to the CAP Podcast

TRANSLATION: Is It a Good Idea For Chinese Companies in Africa to Reply Primarily on Chinese Workers?

Jenny Vaughn/AFP

Few issues in the China-Africa relationship are as old or as contentious as that of labor. Accusations that Chinese companies prefer to hire their own unskilled laborers and then mistreat the local employees they do hire are among the widely believed perceptions about Chinese labor practices in Africa. While there’s ample evidence that confirms some truth to both allegations, a number of different researchers from Hong Kong, Britain, and elsewhere have found that the situation isn’t quite so clear-cut.

  • Get a daily email packed with the latest China-Africa news and analysis.
  • Read exclusive insights on the key trends shaping China-Africa relations.
  • Full access to the News Feed that provides daily updates on Chinese engagement in Africa and throughout the Global South.

China, Africa and the Global South... find out what’s happening.

Subscribe today for unlimited access.

What is The China-Africa Project?


The CAP is passionately independent, non-partisan and does not advocate for any country, company or culture.


A carefully curated selection of the day’s most important China-Africa stories. Updated 24 hours a day by human editors. No bots, no algorithms.


Diverse, often unconventional insights from scholars, analysts, journalist and a variety of stakeholders in the China-Africa discourse.


A unique professional network of China-Africa scholars, analysts, journalists and other practioners from around the world.