Foxconn Working Conditions

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Exploitation of Workers in China: Unveiling the Unique Capitalism Adopted in China World Youth Leaders Forum 2012
Social
 subtheme
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
  Yun
 Yin
 Chan
  Department
 of
 Philosophy,
 Faculty
 of
 Arts
  The
 Chinese
 University
 of
 Hong
 Kong
 
 
 
 
 


  Abstract
 
 

2
 

This
  paper
  will
  explain
  that
  the
  cause
  of
  the
  ongoing
  trend
  of
  exploitation
 

of
  workers
  in
  China
  ultimately
  lies
  in
  the
  integration
  of
  powers
  within
  the
  socio-­‐ political
 system
 of
 China.
 
 
  First,
  the
  general
  situation
  of
  exploitation
  of
  workers
  will
  be
  explored.
 

Abuses
  including
  unpaid
  wages,
  wages
  below
  contract
  pay,
  unsafe
  working
  conditions
 are
 common
 in
 China.
 Although
 a
 new
 pro-­‐labor
 contract
 law
 was
 put
  forward
 in
 2008,
 the
 problem
 still
 prevails.
 It
 seems
 that
 the
 crux
 of
 the
 problem
  lies
 in
 the
 ineffective
 enforcement
 of
 laws.
 
  Then,
 a
 macroscopic
 perspective
 on
 the
 issue
 will
 be
 given.
 By
 unveiling
 

the
  unique
  capitalistic
  social
  system
  of
  China,
  the
  paper
  will
  suggest
  that
  the
  integration
  of
  powers
  undermines
  the
  judicial
  power
  and
  all
  other
  regulatory
  units,
 such
 as
 labor
 unions
 and
 media.
 
 
  After
  that,
  the
  paper
  will
  investigate
  the
  problem
  in
  a
  more
  microscopic
 

way,
  suggesting
  how
  the
  bureaucratic
  power
  intervenes
  with
  the
  labor
  arbitration
 system,
 and
 hence
 preventing
 labor’s
 grievance
 from
 being
 heard.
 
 
  At
  the
  end
  of
  the
  paper,
  I
  will
  suggest
  how
  different
  factors
  converge
  into
 

a
 vicious
 cycle.
 The
 integration
 of
 powers
 have
 undermined
 all
 regulatory
 units
  and
  judicial
  system,
  allowing
  bureaucratic
  powers
  to
  manifest
  unchecked.
  It
  lowers
 the
 bargaining
 power
 of
 workers
 and
 prevents
 their
 grievance
 from
 being
  expressed.
 The
 firms
 continue
 to
 exploit
 workers
 blatantly
 with
 no
 fear
 of
 being
  prosecuted,
 which
 further
 undermines
 the
 judicial
 system.
 

 


 

3
 

I.
 Introduction:
 From
 Foxconn
 Suicide
 Attempts
 to
 the
 Labor
 Contract
 Law
 
  Foxconn
  Technology
  Group
  is
  a
  multinational
  electronics
  manufacturing
 

company
  which
  has
  famous
  clients
  from
  different
  parts
  of
  the
  world,
  including
  Apple,
  Dell,
  Nokia,
  Hewlett-­‐Packard,
  Sony
  and
  other
  large
  electronic
  firms
  (Hurriyet
  Daily
  News,
  2012).
  It
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