China seeks to set record straight on SGR, global trade as row rages

A passenger train arrives in Nairobi. Kenya is expected to sign a Sh380 billion contract for the second phase of the Standard Gauge Railway in September. PHOTO | FILE | NATION MEDIA GROUP

What you need to know:

  • Kenya and other African countries are becoming massively indebted to China
  • Another hot-button issue is growing unease on the notable influx of Chinese citizens settling down to live and work in Nairobi and other urban areas.
  • The most disturbing has been alleged racism and mistreatment of Kenyan workers on the SGR by their Chinese counterparts.

For a country that for years was associated with insular communist orthodoxy, aversion to private enterprise, and self-imposed isolationism, it might seem odd that emerging superpower China is now the one trumpeting it’s fidelity to free trade and globalisation; while accusing the United States, the bastion of capitalism, of betraying the principles underpinning international commercial treaties.

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