PNG crackdown on bad Chinese traders

PAPUA New Guinea has seen a series of anti-Chinese protests and riots in recent years, driven by the increasing number of Asian nationals taking over small businesses. The latest anti-Chinese aggression, though less pronounced than the previous incidents, involved attempts by prominent PNG politician, Oro Province Governor Gary Juffa to get rid of illegal Chinese businesses in his provincial capital of Popondetta.

Last February 2016, Juffa visited all shops to check the immigration status of employees as well as the hygiene standards of their restaurants. He has vowed to close down outlets selling products that are “unsavoury, unhealthy … and breaches consumer laws.” Governor Juffa said the key issue was the sale of unhealthy products and the attitude of shopkeepers.

“A large number of complaints were received from members of the public about a lot of the goods sold that were expired, that were labelled in a foreign language which could not be read or understood by any of my people — which are in breaches of consumer laws that we have,” he said. “Many people were complaining about the substandard quality of the food … and when they would bring it back they would get into massive arguments with the owners of the shops who refused to refund them, or who treated them in a very condescending manner.”

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