I concur with all that has been said about the issue of Asians in the retail sector and more. After fifty something years of living abroad and visiting Samoa regularly, I have witnessed the sad and sobering facts of Samoa’s gradual ‘Asianizaton’ these past 20 years.
Saddest are the small village stores along the roadways that are boarded up, or standing hopelessly empty with shelves begging to be stocked.
It is not Rocket Science the cause and effect of what is happening in Samoa. School students I’ve talked to in the past five months since returning home, lament the influx of Asians as Samoans business demise. If our children are aware, the government, most definitely P.M. Tuilaepa, know of the Chinese cancerous tumor that has taken Samoa by storm.
Hats off to Minister Purcell for starting this long overdue conversation, or at least giving a voice, from the Government, to validate and recognize Samoa’s anxieties, fears and discontent given the government’s inaction and silence on the status quo of China and Chinese dealings in our country.
Fa’amalo, fa’afetai Minister Purcell. Now that the Government and the majority of the voting population of Samoa are on the same page, let us talk sustainable solutions. Real solutions that can motivate government actions. Policies and laws to help elevate Samoan livelihood and standard of living are the governments priorities, I believe. Here are my 3 sene:
• I STRONGLY PROPOSE THE GOVERNMENT TO PUT LAWS AND POLICIES IN PLACE THAT PREVENT SAMOAN/CHINESE BUSINESS PROFITS FROM LEAVING SAMOA. THESE MONIES HAVE TO STAY IN CIRCULATION RIGHT HERE TO GROW AND STIMULATE SAMOAS ECONOMY. IT IS ECONOMY, ECONOMY, ECONOMY. Do not allow foreign investors to funnel the bulk of their wealth, made In Samoa, to their countries or their foreign bank accounts. A viable system has to be in place. Make it a governmental priority. Samoa can be “Business Friendly” and “Business Smart” at the same time with nothing to fear.
• Limit Chinese employees they can bring to Samoa only to professional and blue-collar jobs not found among Samoans. (The Airport Project is a prime example of government erroneous policies that needs fixing)
• Do not allow WHOLESALE COMPANIES to own and operate RETAIL OUTLETS. This is the major cause of the empty shelves and boarded “MOM & POP STORE” cancerous plaque, suffered throughout Samoa. This flawed practice, allowed to run amok, weather legally or by crooked business maneuvering known as “FRONTING,” is unfair, unethical and is economically devastating the country.
Yes, Asians are aggressive and suave at what they do, not necessarily smarter then Samoans or any other human race, JUST HUNGRIER. Having advanced “Asian Studies” as an academic forte and doing business with and among Asians, I know that business smarts, abilities and aggressiveness, has nothing to do with national origin or race, but everything to do with HUNGER.
A races national poverty and depravity motivate selfishness in human beings. Left unchecked or tampered by social consciousness, rises to ultimate GREED at any cost.
Samoans have never been to what real hunger and poverty is. But if we are not vigilant in stopping the Governments present romantic thrust and Chinas invasion, Samoa will completely fall prey to that same poverty GREED. Watch, read and listen to stories of rape, robbery, murder, etc., to know, Samoa is at the abyss.
We Samoans do not have to adopt nor imitate insincere and unethical Chinese business practices. Hell no! We have our own unique form of business ethics, Samoan Hospitality, our FA’AALOALO tradition. Teach these foreigners how and what we expect from them if they wish to remain in Samoa, otherwise, go make their money in their own country and get the hell out of Samoa.
Needless to say, if P.M Tuilaepa does not share this, Samoa’s popular view on the issue, we might as well leave our beloved Samoa to the mercy of the Chinese and foreign investment, my friends, at least for the next 5 years.
Asipau Pamela Tafua McMoore