Apple to Help Pay Costs of Improving Foxconn Factories
In late March, Apple’s Foxconn supplier in China promised to reduce workers’ hours and stabilize their pay in response to the Fair Labor Association’s audit of the company. Apple supported the decisions, and in a statement released at the time said it shared the “goal of improving lives and raising the bar for manufacturing companies everywhere.”
Today, it is being reported that Apple and Foxconn will share the costs to make the sweeping changes to the factories and assembly lines. Foxconn CEO Terry Gou told reporters, including Reuters, in China that Apple “sees this as a competitive strength along with us, and so we will split the initial costs.”
In response to the FLA report in March Foxconn agreed to comply with FLA standards, which included better hours and more stable pay for workers. In order to do that Foxconn agreed to increase the numbers of workers to maintain the same level of output and not lower the income of workers because of the reduced overtime.
Foxconn also raised wages of workers by 25 percent in Febuary. But workers told the FLA that the wages still didn’t meet their basic needs. Subsequently, Foxconn promised to conduct a cost-of-living audit in locations near the factories. Additionally, Foxconn agreed to pay any worker retroactively who hadn’t received overtime wages they were rightly owed.
No details were given on how Apple and Foxconn might split the cost. Apple already financially contributes to bettering the environment at Foxconn, amongst its contributions is the Supplier Employee Education and Development (SEED) program, which aims to educate workers on local laws, their rights, and health and safety.
Apple wouldn’t comment further today to ABC News on Gou’s statements.
For more on working conditions at Foxconn, read ABC News “Nightline’s” exclusive reporting from inside the factory.