Follow CGSP on Social Media

Listen to the CGSP Podcast

The South African Government is Making Huawei an Example


The South African Department of Labor’s decision to sue the local subsidiary of the Chinese mobile technology giant Huawei for hiring too many foreign workers could signal a wider crackdown on foreign firms. This comes as the country’s unemployment rate soars and pressure to allocate jobs to South Africans reaches a boiling point.

The lawsuit is reportedly going ahead after talks between Huawei South Africa and the South African government broke down. The government is accusing the Chinese company of breaking employment equity regulations that require foreign companies to hire at least 60% local workers. It alleges that Huawei South Africa’s workforce is 90% foreign. The breach was revealed by a 2020 labor audit, after which the company reportedly tried to find an amicable solution. However, talks seem to have failed and the department said its lawsuit is going ahead because the company took no steps to rebalance its hiring.

  • Get a daily email packed with the latest China-Africa news and analysis.
  • Read exclusive insights on the key trends shaping China-Africa relations.
  • Full access to the News Feed that provides daily updates on Chinese engagement in Africa and throughout the Global South.

China, Africa and the Global South... find out what’s happening.

Subscribe today for unlimited access.

What is The China-Global South Project?


The China-Global South Project is passionately independent, non-partisan and does not advocate for any country, company or culture.


A carefully curated selection of the day’s most important China-Global South stories. Updated 24 hours a day by human editors. No bots, no algorithms.


Diverse, often unconventional insights from scholars, analysts, journalists and a variety of stakeholders in the China-Global South discourse.


A unique professional network of China-Africa scholars, analysts, journalists and other practioners from around the world.