The trade ministry in Somaliland yesterday announced the arrest of foreign nationals implicating of breaching the country’s laws after they were caught dealing in retail business which is prohibited according to the laws of the land. The foreign nationals had set up stores in Wajale, a commercial hub that is located in the border with Ethiopia. This was disclosed by the Director General to the ministry of trade, Mr. Mustafe Mohamed Ali alias Bile. He announced that the foreign nationals that were arrested during the operation include Chinese, German, Portuguese, Egyptian, Sudanese and Yemeni. The DG stated firmly that the country’s trading laws do not allow foreign traders to engage in dealing with retail business.
Local traders both from Hargeisa and Wajale alerted the ministry after addressing complaints that their business are being stolen by foreign who are doing business under cover. The DG said that the ministry conducted thorough inspection over the gripe from the local traders.
Mr. Bile cited that the inspectors had seen with their eyes that foreigners were busy trading in retail and whole sale business in Wajale by setting up stores there. He confirmed that all foreign nationals are under police custody. Mr. Bile further asserted that the foreign nationals were doing business using licenses granted to local traders which is being interpreted as a breach to country’s laws regarding trader and commerce.
The DG said that business is an open market but reiterated that both the locals and the nationals must comply with the laws.