South-South migration and trade : African traders in China
CCS Policy Briefings are drawn from the published reports and other material produced by the Centre. They aim to highlight specific recommendations and outcomes from the larger reports and present them in a concise, easily consumable format.
The original publication is available at http://www.sun.ac.za/ccs
China-Africa relations are mainly driven by economic co-operation, underpinned by trade, investment and aid. The growing economic interests and business ties between China and Africa come along with movement of people; hence Africans in China and Chinese in Africa seeking trade opportunities not only at the macro- but also at the micro-level. This paper explores the various types of traders from Africa operating in China and thereby gives some insights on their role in China-Africa trade and provides some recommendations to Chinese authorities in engaging with this new quality of globalisation. Since the establishment of the Forum on China Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) in 2000, China-Africa trade volume has rapidly increased, reaching more than US$ 200 billion in 2012. Market openness, shifts in trade patterns leading to trade liberalisation in China and Africa and China’s accession to the World Trade Organisation (WTO), in December 2001, have contributed to boosting Sino-African trade volumes. Besides the big picture of ever increasing trade volumes, the relationship is driven by individuals on both sides, including African traders in China.