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Latest Mckinsey report paints gloomy picture of China’s business relations with Nigeria

There are real fears that contrary to the growing impression that Nigeria is gaining much from several near-free infrastructure loans and inflow of investors from China, a gloomy and very dangerous angle of the relations have emerged.

One of the dangers includes the observation that several Chinese firms operating in Nigeria are not documented in China, meaning that their mission may have been illegal in the first instance.

The first report by Mckinsey, a global consulting firm, had opened up that out of the 930 Chinese companies operating in Nigeria; only 317 were documented by the Chinese ministry of commerce.

Diplomatic pundits say Nigeria must be very careful in its foreign business policy with China to avoid compromising the growth of local content.

This is coming from reactions to the latest Mckinsey report titled ‘Lions on the move II: Realising the potential of Africa’s economies.

In its new research, the group averred that only 47 per cent of raw materials used by the Chinese firms were of African origin and only 44 per cent of the local managers at such companies were Africans.

On the issue of use of Chinese raw materials, analysts say the idea will kill efforts already made by government and private sector in deepening capacities and also loss of jobs.

According to the report, “Nigeria does not yet have the same level of engagement with China as Ethiopia and South Africa”.

In his response during a recent interview, the President, Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN), Dr. Frank Jacobs, said that the firms might be doing illegal business in Nigeria.

Earlier in July, about 20 Asian expatriates working with Zte telecoms Services Company from China were nabbed by operatives of the Nigerian Immigration Service (NIS) on grounds of operating without work permits but mere business Visa which had expired for long.

Also, in August, 16 Chinese nationals were caught engaging in massive illegal mining in Zurak, Wase Local Government of Plateau State.

MAN president therefore called on the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) to fish out the illegal Chinese businesses.