July 21, 2009

Nuctech's Namibia Adventure

A corruption scandal in Namibia includes a Chinese national with links to a tech firm headed until last year by the son of Chinese President Hu. In typical heavy handed fashion Beijing attempted to quash news stories through web filtering yesterday only to add more grist to the rumour mill surrounding the controversy.

Namibia used a new anti-corruption law to investigate and arrest a former Namibia government official, her business partner, and a Chinese man named Yang Fan. At the heart of the scandal is a trading company called Teko Trading set up by this alleged gang to funnel monies received by the Namibian government but originating from a $12.8 million (US dollars) loan from the Export-Import Bank of China. The money was for purchase of THSCAN container inspection scanners made by the Nuctech Company of Beijing. THSCAN scanners are used to inspect containers arriving at ports around the world including Los Angeles, Singapore, and many important ports. The money siphoned by Teko Trading was used for brand new Toyota autos and to pay off house loans and other purposes.

The connection to Hu Jintao is tenuous at best. Hu's son Hu Haifeng was head of Nuctech but left a year ago for a more senior position in the parent company. Info on the happenings in Namibia originate from stories by AP reporter Max Hamata, based in Namibia, and the Affafrica.com websites. AllAfrica.com, Inc., is headquartered in Washington, DC, and has teamed up in the past with USAID programs.

More interestingly, the Namibia-Nuctech deal gives a glimpse into how Beijing uses trade finance to facilitate exports and support to Chinese firms....

Labels: ,

Comments: Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?

Subscribe to Posts [Atom]