China’s growing influence in Samoa – especially their dominance in business – has not gone unnoticed among rural residents.
With the increasing number of Chinese retail shops, some residents worry about what will become of Samoan-owned businesses in the future.
Among them is Iosefa Fa’atoia, 59, of Falelauniu.
“I would be lying if I said I’m not worried,” he said.
“They are everywhere and you cannot deny that. I really believe this is just the beginning of this invasion.”
The Village Voice met up with Fa’atoia while he was on his way home after dropping his daughter to school yesterday.
“I am worried about seeing so many Chinese around the country setting up their stores and staying there too,” he said.
“Of course people like the Chinese, they give out cheap things but to me that is part of their campaign to take over.”
Fa’atoia also shared his opinion about the government allowing China to fund a lot of the projects.
“Our hospital, airport and government buildings were funded by the Chinese government; I just hope that these are donations not gifts with expectations.”
Fa’atoia said it is our job to protect our land.
“When you look at it closely, they are here to do business and they want our land that’s for sure, they will keep coming and coming until their whole extended families are here.
“We have also witnessed crimes the Chinese have committed in our country; we don’t see those types of crimes by a Samoan but these guys are advanced with the way they do crimes.”
He added that this should be a wake up call.
“We need to be alert about what is happening,” he said. “As I said, this is only the beginning of what I am afraid will become a regular thing so that soon they will take over everything.”