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Wal-Mart launches probe into labor abuse allegations

[ 2009-11-27 11:28]     字号 [] [] []  
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United States retailing giant Wal-Mart yesterday launched its own investigation into the findings of a New-York based human rights group, which levied serious labor abuse allegations against the company after inspecting five of its supplier factories in China.

"We take such reports very seriously," a statement from Wal-Mart said.

"We will take prompt remedial action if our investigations confirm any of the alleged findings."

A China Labor Watch (CLW) report, which was made public on Wednesday, alleged that employees in a number of Chinese supplier factories of the US retailer have been forced to work up to 77 hours a week in "poor working conditions".

As the world's largest retailer, "Wal-Mart leverages its massive product orders to purchase goods at low prices, and the workers have to bear the financial burden", CLW said in a statement.

CLW sent its own investigators to work in two factories in Shenzhen and found out that "workers are forced to lie to Wal-Mart auditors about their meager incomes, insurance coverage and working hours".

Good workers get an annual bonus of no more than 100 yuan, the report said.

Li Qiang, the founder and executive director of CLW, said the retailing giant "deserves moral condemnation at a time when Chinese workers cannot sue the company over poor work conditions". Li has been looking into Wal-Mart's practices for nearly a decade.

Wal-Mart, which has more than 250 stores across China, outlined a series of goals last year geared toward a more environmentally and socially responsible worldwide supply chain, according to the company.


1. Where did CLW send two of its investigators to work?

2. What is the annual bonus for good workers?

3. How many Wal-Mart stores are there in China?


1. Two factories in Shenzhen.

2. 100 yuan.

3. More than 250.


(中国日报网英语点津 Helen 编辑)

Wal-Mart launches probe into labor abuse allegations

About the broadcaster:

Wal-Mart launches probe into labor abuse allegations

Nancy Matos is a foreign expert at China Daily Website. Born and raised in Vancouver, Canada, Nancy is a graduate of the Broadcast Journalism and Media program at the British Columbia Institute of Technology. Her journalism career in broadcast and print has taken her around the world from New York to Portugal and now Beijing. Nancy is happy to make the move to China and join the China Daily team.