A Malawian entrepreneur in South Africa

Global Business

A Malawian entrepreneur in South Africa

In South Africa, a young Malawian entrepreneur has ventured into his own enterprise in one of the country’s poorest suburbs – defying the odds of starting a business led by a foreign national.

CCTV’s Julie Scheier reports.

A Malawian entrepreneur in South Africa

A Malawian entrepreneur in South Africa

In South Africa, a young Malawian entrepreneur has ventured into his own enterprise in one of the country's poorest suburbs - defying the odds of starting a business led by a foreign national. CCTV's Julie Scheier reports.

For the past four years, 29 year old Harold Mkolokosa has run his carpentry in Tembisa township, on the East side of Johannesburg.

Mkolokosa started his shop with only two helpers. Now, he employs seven Malawians full-time.

Mkolokosa, and most of his staff, are self taught – meaning their work must be good, to ensure the business survives the competition.

It’s on the side of Modderfontein Road where Harold and several other foreign nationals have set up shop. It is also where many come to find and create their own jobs.”

“On this road you find Mozambicans, Zimbabweans and Malawians, on this road they are all doing carpentry, they all have their own jobs and they can provide for their families,” carpenter Isaac Rashaji said.

But providing for their families isn’t always easy. Many of these international migrants have felt threatened during previous xenophobic attacks, and are often accused of stealing jobs from locals. Even when they hire South Africans.

But however hard life may be for these migrants, the carpentry business on this side of the road is going well. Mkolokosa hopes his clients continue to come back and place more orders.