Africology: Journal of Pan African Studies 7 (10), 44-64
Driven by trade and investments, the growing relationship between African countries and China beyond the macro-level engagement, which relates to state-to-state interaction, has shown growing interest among individual traders in both Africa and China who seek business opportunities outside of their respective borders. While Africa - China trade has increased over the years, the role played by African and Chinese traders in Africa and China is important and needs special attention. While research on African traders in Guangzhou has been largely conducted, this paper focuses on African traders in Yiwu which has become an economic destination for many traders from different African countries, either established in Yiwu or traveling back and forth from their home countries in Africa. The paper also explores the African traders’ trade networks in Yiwu and their role in the distribution of Chinese consumer goods in Africa. It first analyses why Yiwu is becoming a destination for African raders, then highlights the different categories of African traders in Yiwu and discusses the African traders’ transnational trade networks and role in the distribution of ‘made in China’ products in Africa.