Deputy Head of Mission, Political Counselor at the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China Li Nan has revealed that Chinese investors are afraid of coming to Botswana due to draconian immigration laws.
Addressing members of the media at the Chinese embassy on Tuesday, Nan said most Chinese investors have raised concerns that one can be deported anytime from Botswana without reasons and as such are not comfortable to invest locally. “Imagine you have invested a lot in Botswana and the next morning you are told to pack and leave the country,” he said without mincing words.
He said recently they were shocked when a Chinese national was deported for illegal fishing that happened two years ago and was fined for that. Nan said they consulted a lawyer about the issue who shared their sentiments that one cannot be punished twice for the same offence but said it was futile exercise as their counterparts had already been booted out of the country.
Another problem that is of great concern to the Chinese government is non-renewable of visa for their people that have businesses in Botswana without being given any reasons. He said that this does not only affect the business but lead to hundreds of Batswana losing their jobs.
Trade between Botswana and China in the past year was in deficit due to the attitude of Botswana government towards Chinese investors. The briefing was to update members of the media on the recent visit by Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Relations Pelonomi Venson-Moitoi to China.