Harding jumped six places to join overnight leader Kitayama in front after an 8-under 64 in the third round. Kitayama carded a 2-under 70.
Victor Perez was still in position to continue his fabulous start on the European Tour after a 71 put him within four shots of the lead. Perez qualified from the Challenge Tour and finished tied for third last weekend at the season-opening Hong Kong Open.
Defending champion Dylan Frittelli climbed up the leaderboard in Mauritius with a 68 to go to nine under overall and into a tie for 12th.
Ernie Els was six under.