This was in the news on-line, today, 11 may 2012

Fair Games? Human Rights of Workers in Olympic 2012

* Update:

* Indonesian workers making Adidas Olympic kit 65-hours a week for 34p an hour. read more.

* Indonesia- $1.8 million owed to PT Kizone workers. read more.

* In pictures: Made in Cambodia. read & see more.

More news, updates of fair games here.

ASIA

* ASEAN ministers talk migrants, but no deals:

Prime Minister Hun Sen appealed to ASEAN member countries yesterday to formally agree on how to protect the rights of migrant workers as ASEAN moves toward becoming an economic community by 2015.

During his address at the ASEAN labour ministers’ meeting at the Peace Palace, the premier spoke of the importance of a unified approach to migrant workers’ safety – a topic close to Cambodia, because of abuses against maids in Malaysia.

“ASEAN has been working on this problem, but no agreement has been reached that we can implement,” he said. read more.

23:22:10 local time map of china CHINA

* China’s textile industry growth slows in Q1:

China’s textile industry, which contributes significantly to the country’s exports, posted slower growth in the first quarter of 2012 due to weak external demand, according to National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) data released on Thursday.

read more. & read more. & read more.

   

23:22:10 local time map of philippines PHILIPPINES

* Philippines: 17 garment factory fire victims were ‘locked into dorms’:

Locked in from the outside, ‘stay-in’ workers in a garment store in Butuan City burned to death to their death following a dawn fire that gutted the building where they are staying.

Seventeen of the 22 workers living in the dormitory at the third floor of the building perished in the inferno.  One of those killed was a five-month pregnant worker.

read more.

22:22:10 local time map of viet_nam VIET NAM

* Vietnam may cut taxes to rescue businesses: report

Vietnam’s Finance Ministry is considering a relief package for local businesses worth VND25 trillion that includes a 30 percent cut in corporate income tax and a deferment of value-added tax payments.

The tax concessions will be given to small and medium companies in agriculture, seafood, footwear and garment sectors that employ many workers, the Tuoi Tre newspaper reported Thursday, citing an unidentified ministry source. read more.

22:22:10 local time map of cambodia CAMBODIA

* Hun Sen calls for protection of migrant workers in ASEAN:

Prime Minister Hun Sen urged Southeast Asia Thursday to protect migrant workers as labor markets are liberalized with the formation of the ASEAN Community in 2015. Speaking at a meeting of ASEAN labor ministers, he said that protecting and promoting the rights of migrant workers was crucial since the free flow of skilled labor was key to the future ASEAN Economic Community. read more.

* Protest turns violent on labour day:

Women are physically attacked by military officers as they try to submit a petition to the World Bank and European Union. Caught on camera by a bystander. see more.

* 22nd ASEAN labor ministers Meeting kicks off in Phnom Penh:

22nd ASEAN labor ministers meeting on Thursday began in Phnom Penh under presidency of Samdech PM Hun Sen. at the opening ceremony, Samdech Hun Sen urged the region to respect the rights of workers and migrant workers, and inspire the skilled labor and development while the group will create the ASEAN community in 2015.Cambodia also hosted the 8th ALMM Plus Three Labour Ministers Meeting from China, Japan and South Korea. “quality of skilled labor is a must for us and it will help boost the economic growth of country and region.” he added. read more.

* Workers waiting for a bargain:

Informal workers, a class that includes beer promoters, tuk tuk drivers and farmers, are among those who stand to benefit most from the upcoming trade-union law, observers say – and workers say it can’t come soon enough.

Dave Welsh, country director of the American Center for International Labor Solidarity, said the law’s latest draft allowed the associations many of these informal workers are already in to be pushed to their “full logical conclusion”: a working union.

This would enable workers to collectively bargain with their employers or the equivalent parties, which could include the government or local authorities, Welsh said.

“Whoever was deemed to be the employer would be under a legal obligation to sit down and bargain with them on issues they want to,” he said. read more.

23:22:10 local time map of malaysia MALAYSIA

* Malaysian workers’ productivity up 10.3% on-month, up 3.3% on-year:

Malaysian workers’ productivity in the manufacturing sector, as measured by the average sales value per employee in March, increased by 10.3% month-on-month to RM53,132.According to the Statistics Department, it said on Thursday that productivity in March also increased by 3.3% on-year.

“Productivity in February 2012 was revised to positive 11.0% year-on-year to record RM48,166,” it said.

The department said in terms of salaries & wages paid in March, there was an increase of 10.0% (RM246.7mil) month-on-month to RM2,708.9mil. read more.

23:22:10 local time map of indonesia INDONESIA

* Adidas, step up your game on workers’ rights!:

Adidas are refusing to pay a cent to Indonesian workers who are still owed US$ 1.8 million in severance pay a year after their factory, PT Kizone, closed down.

In January 2011, the owner of PT Kizone in Indonesia fled, resulting in the closure of the factory in April the same year, and leaving 2,800 workers without work and the severance pay they were entitled to. Sportswear brand adidas had been sourcing from PT Kizone for many years, where workers were paid as little as US$ 0.60 an hour.

read more and take Action!

21:52:10 local time map of myanmar MYANMAR

* Rangoon Hair Factory Strikers Win Wage Hike:

Striking employees at an artificial hair factory in Rangoon’s Industrial Zone 4 were granted their demands for a wage hike as well as increased workers’ rights on Thursday.

More than 1,800 staff at HI Mo High Art factory walked out over demands for increased pay on Wednesday. They then marched to the Labor Office in Mayangone Tonwship and expressed their wishes to officials there. read more.

21:22:10 local time map of bangla_desh BANGLA DESH

* Statement of Solidarity with Bangladeshi Factory Workers:

Members of OUR Walmart and Warehouse Workers United have issued a statement of solidarity with Bangladeshi factory workers in the wake of the brutal torture and murder of Bangladeshi labor activist Aminul Islam in April, delivered by OUR Walmart member Cindy Murray.  Islam was a union leader at the Bangladesh Center for Worker Solidarity (BCWS), a worker rights organization active in Bangladesh’s low-wage garment industry, where Walmart is a major buyer. Before he was killed, Aminul Islam and other BCWS leaders faced multiple arrests, torture, false criminal charges, and threats to their safety in recent years because of their outspoken advocacy in defense of garment workers’ rights.  read more & see video.

* Exporters bring back jute from Benapole:

Bangladeshi Exporters have brought back a big chunk of raw jute that had been stock piled at Benapole border as New Delhi’s abrupt imposition of four per cent duty made importers reluctant. Importers insisted that Bangladeshi exporters pay the duty. However, some traders at both the countries have shared the duty money and resolved the irritating issue.  read more.

20:52:10 local time map of india INDIA

* Reebok supply chain in crisis with no fresh stock issued:

The crisis in its top India leadership team is ballooning into a major problem for Reebok India.

In what could bring the entire supply chain for Reebok India to a halt, accumulating payments due from the company to franchisees and a stop in the issuance of fresh stock is leading to high uncertainty about the future of the sportswear firm among channel partners. read more.

* TN weavers’ savings scheme will get govt contribution:

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa has announced that the state government would contribute to the Tamil Nadu Co-operative Handloom Weavers Savings and Security Scheme, as the Centre has discontinued contributing to the same.

The CM said that beneficiaries of the said scheme contribute eight percent of their wages to the scheme, while the state government would contribute four percent of the wage earned by each weaver. read more.

* Indian textile & clothing firms make loss in FY12:

The volatile fluctuations in cotton and yarn prices in both Indian and global markets resulted in changes in inventory levels of textile and clothing companies, and several of them posted a dip in bottom line in fiscal year 2011-12, according to the Confederation of Indian Textile Industry (CITI). read more.

* India exported 11 million bales of cotton in October-May:

India’s cotton exports stood at 11 million bales of 170 kg each in the first eight months of the 2011-12 marketing year, a top government official said today. read more.

* Moustache moves into ladies segment 🙂

One of the most popular denim brands of Eastern India, Moustache now wants to have better & bigger foothold on the Ladies Segment. After receiving ward from Images Group for last two consecutive years at the Eastern India Retail Forum in the mens wear segment, time has come to expand its portfolio as the company feels. read more.

* Indian apparel makers urge govt to reclassify loans:

Garment manufacturers in India have requested the Government to change loan repayment clauses to avoid being treated as non-performing assets (NPAs), in view of the current volatile market conditions. read more.

* CCI buys 1.26mn quintal cotton this season:

Cotton Corporation of India (CCI) has bought 1.26 million quintals of cotton in the ongoing cotton marketing season, Minister of State for Textiles Panabaaka Lakshmi informed the Parliament.

Giving state-wise details she said 265,000 quintals of cotton has been procured by the central agency from the state of Maharashtra at an average price of Rs. 4,075 per quintal, while around 660,000 quintals of cotton have been procured from Gujarat at an average price of Rs. 4,448 per quintal. read more.

20:52:10 local time map of sri_lanka SRI LANKA

* Sri Lanka’s garment manufacturers supplying for 2012 Olympics accused of worker abuses:

A report that examines whether garment manufacturers supplying for 2012 London Olympics treat their workers in accordance with their fundamental human rights has accused the Sri Lankan garment manufacturers of violating human rights of workers.

The report “Fair Games ? Human Rights of workers in Olympic 2012 supplier factories” released on May 7th in London by the Play Fair Campaign, has examined whether workers producing sportswear, garments and textiles for the London 2012 Olympics are being treated with respect and dignity and according to their fundamental human rights read more.

* Sri Lankan garment exports may slowdown this year:

Apparel exports from Sri Lanka may witness a slowdown this year owing to financial crisis and political changes in the eurozone.

The South Asian country’s total exports may not reach the target of US$ 11.9 billion in 2012, as more than 60 percent of Sri Lankan export earnings are from garments, Ajith Nivard Cabraal, the Governor of Central Bank, said.

The Governor added that Sri Lanka is also likely to miss its GDP growth target of 7.2 percent this year, mainly owing to slowdown in exports.

However, he said, garments being an item that people cannot avoid buying, the exports may not decline very drastically, the Governor said. read more.

20:22:10 local time map of pakistan PAKISTAN

* Pak govt steadfast to redress textile industry issues:

The Government is completely aware about the issues faced by the domestic textile industry, and it would extend all possible support to aid the textile exporters, Pakistan Minister of State for Privatisation, Rana Asif Tauseef, has said. read more.

* Pakistan-Germany discuss leather trade prospects:

Quality and price are the two factors that would govern the rise in Pakistan’s leather exports to Germany, said Dr. Tilo Klinner, the Consul General of Germany.

During a meeting with representatives of Pakistan Tanners Association (PTA), he informed that Pakistan’s leather and leather item exports to Germany grew by 45 percent during last fiscal year. read more.

* Pakistan bedsheet makers seek incentives in Budget:

The All Pakistan Bedsheets and Upholstery Manufacturers Association (APBUMA) has urged the Government to offer financial incentives to the country’s textile sector in the Federal Budget 2012-13.

Pakistan’s textile exports declined by 6.73 percent till January 2012 and if financial incentives are not given, the sector’s exports will plummet further, Syed Muhammad Aasim Shah, Chairman of APBUMA, said. read more.

* Pakistan jute millers seek hike in jute yarn import duty:

The Pakistan Government has been requested by the Pakistan Jute Mills Association (PJMA) to raise tariff on jute yarn and twines imports, to safeguard the local industry.

read more.


* Pakistan cotton to get trademark: PCGA:

Just like India’s ‘Shankar’ brand cotton, Pakistan will also obtain a trademark for its cotton, so as to enhance exports, Pakistan Cotton Ginners Association (PCGA) Chairman Amanullah Qureshi said. read more.

map of Asia

Adidas step up your game on workers’ rights:
* take action and please sign:
http://www.cleanclothes.org/urgent-actions/kizone

ASIA
* ASEAN ministers talk migrants, but no deals

CHINA
* China’s textile industry growth slows in Q1

PHILIPPINES
* Philippines: 17 garment factory fire victims were ‘locked into dorms’

VIET NAM
* Vietnam may cut taxes to rescue businesses

CAMBODIA
* Hun Sen calls for protection of migrant workers in ASEAN
* Protest turns violent on labour day
* 22nd ASEAN labor ministers Meeting kicks off in Phnom Penh
* Workers waiting for a bargain

MALAYSIA
* Malaysian workers’ productivity up 10.3% on-month, up 3.3% on-year

INDONESIA
* Adidas, step up your game on workers’ rights!

MYANMAR
* Rangoon Hair Factory Strikers Win Wage Hike

BANGLA DESH
* Statement of Solidarity with Bangladeshi Factory Workers
* Exporters bring back jute from Benapole

INDIA
* Reebok supply chain in crisis with no fresh stock issued
* TN weavers’ savings scheme will get govt contribution
* Indian textile & clothing firms make loss in FY12
* India exported 11 million bales of cotton in October-May
* Moustache moves into ladies segment
* Indian apparel makers urge govt to reclassify loans
* CCI buys 1.26mn quintal cotton this season

SRI LANKA
* Sri Lanka’s garment manufacturers supplying for 2012 Olympics accused of worker abuses
* Sri Lankan garment exports may slowdown this year

PAKISTAN
* Pak govt steadfast to redress textile industry issues
* Pakistan-Germany discuss leather trade prospects
* Pakistan bedsheet makers seek incentives in Budget
* Pakistan jute millers seek hike in jute yarn import duty
* Pakistan cotton to get trademark: PCGA

latest tweets (& news)

Convention on the Rights of the Child
Universal Declaration of Human Rights

I wonder who they are
The men who really run this land
And I wonder why they run it
With such a thoughtless hand

What are their names
And on what streets do they live
I'd like to ride right over
This afternoon and give
Them a piece of my mind
About peace for mankind
Peace is not an awful lot to ask
    David Crosby

I wonder who they are
The people who are buying these clothes
I'd like to know what they've paid for it
How much the makers have paid for this
Fairer income is not an awful lot to ask
Better working conditions is not an awful lot to ask
    A. Searcher

For more and other (labour) news you can follow on twitter: @asearcher2