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Chinese dominance in Africa’s mobile market impairs continent economically


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Even when Africa’s consumption of mobile devices is huge yet the continent is not able to reap its benefits as millions of these devices are shipped into the continent from China.

One of the experts said that the continent can emulate the Indian market. India is facilitating the production of mobile devices as well as creating jobs, serving the local market and exporting.

Africa’s mobile phone market is dominated by China. As the fastest growing continent in the world, and the home to the youngest population in the world, Africa promises to be a major consumption market over the next three decades, reported China Global South.

However, according to research data, Africa’s huge consumption of mobile devices is not being leveraged to the continent’s benefit. Chinese manufacturer Transsion, further, sells more phones in Africa than any other vendor, with 47.9 per cent of the market share in the fourth quarter of 2021.

The expert also noted that it is essential for the continent to enhance beneficial cooperation with China. Meanwhile, Africa has been left out of the production line, and thrust into a geopolitical battle in technology, between China and the West.

Technologies on the continent have Chinese hardware but are embedded with Western software. African hardware and software designers are neglected and not given the necessary support by institutions, including their governments, due to a preference for technologies made outside of the continent, as per the media portal.

Moreover, the Chinese consumer products have traditionally had a bad reputation among African consumers because of the negative notion of their products being cheap and of inferior quality.

In a survey, even when 91 per cent of his respondents reported being aware of such perception of Chinese products, still there is evidence of financially secured individuals and organizations opting for Chinese products. This is contrary to the generally held perception that Made-in-China is for the poor, who lack the capacity to afford known western brands.

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