Nairobi Merchants Battle Chinese Influx, Seek Protection for Local Business Interests

by | Apr 18, 2023 | Business, News | 0 comments

Over 120 Nairobi-based businesses, represented by the Indigenous Capital Protection Association, have taken legal action against the Kenyan government, alleging that Chinese enterprises such as China Square are operating unlawfully within the country. The merchants assert that the influx of Chinese traders in Kenya is having a detrimental effect on local commerce, undercutting prices and undermining the stability of the domestic market.

The suit, filed in the High Court, seeks to halt China Square’s operations and impose a temporary ban on Chinese enterprises importing and selling goods produced in China. The petition also calls for the suspension of work permits and business licenses granted to foreign nationals. It states, “Court to temporarily restrain the Director Kenya Citizens and Foreign Nationals Management Services from issuing Class D and G permits to foreign nationals, pending the determination of the petition.”

The plaintiffs, represented by attorney Kibe Mungai, argue that the continued presence of Chinese traders in Kenya’s smaller towns poses a significant threat to local businesses, potentially resulting in the loss of two million jobs. Mungai claims that the Kenya Investment Authority and the Kenya Citizens and Foreign Nationals Management Service are complicit in a broader scheme orchestrated by the Chinese government. He asserts that this scheme seeks to establish “Chinese Hustlers” and economic migrants in Kenya under the pretense of legitimate investment and economic activity.

The legal challenge brought forth by Nairobi’s merchants highlights the growing concern over the impact of Chinese enterprises on local economies and the need for governmental intervention to protect domestic industries.

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