china hit by labour unrest as global slowdown bites
Last Updated : GMT 13:03:42
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today

China hit by labour unrest as global slowdown bites

Arab Today, arab today

Arab Today, arab today China hit by labour unrest as global slowdown bites

Beijing - AFP

China\'s manufacturing heartland has been hit by large-scale strikes in recent weeks, as an increasingly demanding workforce faces off with employers struggling with high costs and falling exports. Thousands of workers in factories in the southern province of Guangdong have gone on strike in recent days, protesting over low salaries, wage cuts or tough conditions, and triggering a strong police response and some clashes. The unrest comes as China\'s exports and manufacturing activity weakens, hit by falling demand due to economic woes in Europe and the United States -- both crucial markets for the export-driven economy. \"When orders and profits decline and costs of business increase for manufacturers... their first instinct is to pass those costs on to the workers,\" said Geoffrey Crothall, editor of the China Labour Bulletin. He said many factories in Guangdong were cutting back on lucrative overtime, bonuses and benefits for their workers, even as living costs remain high. \"That\'s why we are seeing workers much more willing to go out on strike and protest,\" he told AFP, adding that the recent bout of unrest was the most intense since a series of strikes in the summer of 2010. Earlier this month, more than 7,000 workers went on strike at a factory in Guangdong making New Balance, Adidas and Nike shoes, clashing with police in a protest over layoffs and wage cuts. In Shenzhen, the manufacturing metropolis that borders Hong Kong, more than 400 female workers at a bra factory downed tools to demand higher wages. Alistair Thornton, China analyst at IHS Global Insight, said Guangdong\'s huge army of factory staff -- many of them migrant workers -- would go on feeling the effects of the global slowdown. \"There\'s a lot more upward pressure from the labour force as it demands higher wages, but at the same time, it increasingly looks like there\'s less room in the global economy for the Chinese exporter. There\'s a conflict there,\" he said. Ji Shao, a Beijing-based labour expert at Capital University of Economics and Business, said she had just come back from Shenzhen, and painted a pessimistic picture. She added that a huge number of small enterprises could be forced to shut their doors, pressured by high costs, difficulty accessing loans and the global downturn. Vice Premier Wang Qishan, China\'s top finance official, warned just over a week ago that the global recession was here to stay and would affect the world\'s second largest economy. Other countries in Asia are also bracing for a rough ride. Bank of Japan Governor Masaaki Shirakawa said Thursday that Tokyo should prepare for potential major shocks from Europe. Manufacturing is a key driver of growth and employment in China. A fall in month-on-month exports in October -- triggered in part by the deepening eurozone debt crisis -- fuelled fears for the sector. Mark Williams, China economist at Capital Economics, said the level of exports in the country had remained essentially flat from one month to the next since the first quarter of the year. \"The outlook is not at all positive, so a lot of employers will be extremely concerned about the position they will be in in three to six months,\" he added. A survey conducted by banking giant HSBC showed that China\'s manufacturing activity -- which has largely been contracting in recent months -- slumped to its lowest level in 32 months in November. Analysts say any more negative economic readings will force the government to undergo a significant policy turnaround as leaders, fearing mass unrest, seek to avoid a repeat of the huge job losses during the 2008 global crisis. Until recently, the government had been focused on fighting soaring inflation and rolled out a series of measures to ease price rises, such as hiking interest rates or curbing the amount of money banks can lend. These appear to have worked, as inflation slowed sharply in October, with the consumer price index rising 5.5 percent year-on-year, the slowest pace since May. But it is still too high for the government\'s liking, with food prices recording double-digit growth. \"Inflation disproportionately affects the poor, and workers in low-cost exporters tend to be the poorer set of the population,\" said Thornton. In his comments a week ago, Vice Premier Wang said it was better to have an \"unbalanced recovery\" than a \"balanced recession\". \"This perfectly encapsulates the shift in mentality that\'s gone on at the senior leadership level -- the whole of this year, they have been focused on calming the property market and controlling inflation,\" said Thornton. \"But now, that has been slightly put to one side. The bigger priority is now going to be maintaining growth.\" But analysts say the large-scale unemployment that hit China in 2008 -- when 20 million migrant workers lost their jobs -- is unlikely to recur under current circumstances. \"It depends on how bad the global downturn is. It\'s clear how vulnerable the export sector is to external developments. Should the eurozone deteriorate to the extent we saw in 2008, the same thing would happen again,\" said Thornton. \"But at the moment, it doesn\'t look like it\'s going to be as bad as 2008-9.\"  

arabstoday
arabstoday

Name *

E-mail *

Comment Title*

Comment *

: Characters Left

Mandatory *

Terms of use

Publishing Terms: Not to offend the author, or to persons or sanctities or attacking religions or divine self. And stay away from sectarian and racial incitement and insults.

I agree with the Terms of Use

Security Code*

china hit by labour unrest as global slowdown bites china hit by labour unrest as global slowdown bites

 



Name *

E-mail *

Comment Title*

Comment *

: Characters Left

Mandatory *

Terms of use

Publishing Terms: Not to offend the author, or to persons or sanctities or attacking religions or divine self. And stay away from sectarian and racial incitement and insults.

I agree with the Terms of Use

Security Code*

china hit by labour unrest as global slowdown bites china hit by labour unrest as global slowdown bites

 



Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today Jordanian woman reveals her project

GMT 00:46 2017 Saturday ,11 November

Jordanian woman reveals her project
Arab Today, arab today The Big Apple bike boom

GMT 10:47 2017 Wednesday ,22 November

The Big Apple bike boom
Arab Today, arab today Keep kids busy at Thanksgiving gatherings

GMT 11:14 2017 Friday ,10 November

Keep kids busy at Thanksgiving gatherings
Arab Today, arab today Leaders of Russia, Iran, Turkey meet

GMT 10:12 2017 Wednesday ,22 November

Leaders of Russia, Iran, Turkey meet
Arab Today, arab today 'Advanced' cyber attack targets Saudi Arabia

GMT 10:18 2017 Wednesday ,22 November

'Advanced' cyber attack targets Saudi Arabia
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today Australian academic's book pulled

GMT 15:20 2017 Monday ,13 November

Australian academic's book pulled
Arab Today, arab today May under Brexit pressure at EU reform summit

GMT 02:14 2017 Saturday ,18 November

May under Brexit pressure at EU reform summit
Arab Today, arab today Delhi half-marathon to go ahead

GMT 03:51 2017 Saturday ,18 November

Delhi half-marathon to go ahead
Arab Today, arab today The history of solar eclipses

GMT 05:16 2017 Sunday ,20 August

The history of solar eclipses
Arab Today, arab today Honda recalls 800,000 minivans

GMT 11:43 2017 Wednesday ,22 November

Honda recalls 800,000 minivans
Arab Today, arab today VW says will invest over 34bn euros

GMT 07:19 2017 Tuesday ,21 November

VW says will invest over 34bn euros
Arab Today, arab today Singer Jahda Wahba has unlimited ambitions

GMT 07:56 2017 Monday ,20 November

Singer Jahda Wahba has unlimited ambitions
Arab Today, arab today paObama climate envoy slams Trump's rejection

GMT 16:04 2017 Friday ,17 November

paObama climate envoy slams Trump's rejection

GMT 09:23 2017 Saturday ,18 November

Fedra happy for “Between Two Worlds” success

GMT 11:15 2017 Thursday ,16 November

Angola oil boss sacked by father's protege

GMT 18:41 2017 Friday ,20 October

Designer Aql Faqih aspires to innovation

GMT 11:38 2017 Wednesday ,15 November

Unloved vultures fight for their survival

GMT 11:49 2017 Thursday ,17 August

Egyptian artist presents new collection of designs

GMT 13:41 2017 Tuesday ,21 November

French choke up over proposal

GMT 00:44 2017 Monday ,20 November

Japanese regulators raid Airbnb

GMT 17:12 2017 Monday ,07 August

Al-Shawaifi reveals secrets of total solar eclipse

GMT 16:53 2017 Tuesday ,05 September

Youssra depended on colored foam
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today
 
 Arab Today Facebook,arab today facebook  Arab Today Twitter,arab today twitter Arab Today Rss,arab today rss  Arab Today Youtube,arab today youtube  Arab Today Youtube,arab today youtube
arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday
arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday
arabstoday
بناية النخيل - رأس النبع _ خلف السفارة الفرنسية _بيروت - لبنان
arabstoday, Arabstoday, Arabstoday