Foxconn plans China plant amid suicide scrutiny

Jun 29, 2010 By ELAINE KURTENBACH , AP Business Writer

(AP) -- Foxconn Technology, a supplier to Apple Inc., looks ready to build a huge new factory in north-central China despite the company's own misgivings about city-sized manufacturing facilities after a spate of suicides among its young migrant work force.

The company plans to recruit some 300,000 workers for the new plant, to be located in the Henan city of Hebei, according to a notice seen Tuesday on a local government website.

A spate of worker suicides at an enormous complex in the southern boomtown of Shenzhen has drawn attention to the stress many young workers face working in some factories. It also has coincided with a spate of strikes and wage protests at other factories, especially those of Japanese automakers.

Calls to Foxconn's spokesman in rang unanswered. A company official in Taiwan's capital Taipei, who refused to give his name, said he could not comment because any expansion plan would require approval by the company's board of directors.

Foreign companies that rely on China as a source of cheap labor are finding it harder to attract and keep workers, who have begun demanding significantly better pay and working conditions.

China has been pushing Taiwan, Hong Kong and other to focus more on building manufacturing plants in inland regions closer to where most come from.

Taiwan-based Foxconn makes iPads and iPhones for Apple and also makes computers for Dell and Hewlett-Packard Co. The company denies allegations that it runs excessively fast assembly lines and demands too much overtime, but it recently announced two pay hikes that more than doubled basic worker salaries to 2,000 yuan ($290) a month.

Terry Gou, chairman of Foxconn's parent company Hon Hai, recently told shareholders that the company has sought to compensate for a lack of basic social services by building dormitories and recreational facilities. He said the company's existing China factory model may not be sustainable.

The information posted on the Hebi city website says workers would be paid a basic wage of 1,200 yuan ($176) a month during their three-month probation period, with total income up to 2,300 yuan ($340).

After passing examinations, the monthly wage would rise to 2,000 yuan ($300), with total income of up to 3,000 yuan ($440), the notice says.

Overtime would be limited to three hours a day, with one day a week guaranteed off, it says.

The cost of living in Henan and other inland provinces tends to be lower than in Shenzhen. Henan's minimum wage will be 800 yuan (about $120) per month as of July 1.

China has about 150 million migrant , two-thirds of them between the ages of 16 and 30.

Explore further: Judge approves $450 mn deal in Apple ebook suit

not rated yet
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Foxconn to give Chinese workers another pay raise

Jun 06, 2010

(AP) -- Foxconn workers in China will get another pay raise in coming months, on top of an increase that just took effect in response to recent worker suicides, the company said Sunday.

Foxconn raises worker pay by 30 pct after suicides

Jun 02, 2010

(AP) -- Taiwan's Foxconn Technology Group, shaken by a spate of suicides at its China plants, said Wednesday it is raising the pay of workers by 30 percent, a greater increase than first planned.

Taiwan's Foxconn raising pay for workers

May 28, 2010

(AP) -- The Taiwanese electronics company buffeted by a spate of suicides at its China factories said Friday it will raise the pay of workers by an average of 20 percent.

Hong Kong labour activists push for iPhone boycott

May 25, 2010

Hong Kong labour activists said Tuesday they plan to kick off a worldwide boycott of Apple's newest iPhone after a spate of suicides at a southern Chinese factory that makes the iconic device.

Hong Kong protesters picket Apple supplier meeting

Jun 08, 2010

(AP) -- Protesters picketed Foxconn's annual general meeting in Hong Kong on Tuesday, accusing both the Apple Inc. supplier and computer giant of poor corporate ethics after a spate of suicides at Foxconn ...

Recommended for you

Dish restores Turner channels to lineup

Nov 21, 2014

Turner Broadcasting channels such as Cartoon Network and CNN are back on the Dish network after being dropped from the satellite TV provider's lineup during contract talks.

'Call of Duty' blasts past $10 bn in sales

Nov 20, 2014

Blockbuster military shooter video game "Call of Duty" has blasted past $10 billion in lifetime sales, propelled by demand for the latest installment in the 11-year-old franchise.

Square's point-of-sale service goes global

Nov 20, 2014

Financial services startup Square is taking aim at cash registers across the globe, making its point-of-sale software available internationally in English, Spanish, French and Japanese.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.