Subscribe / Unsubscribe Enewsletters | Login | Register

Pencil Banner

Apple called out for omitting factory workers from cash pile

Agam Shah | March 27, 2012
A watchdog group issued a renewed call for Apple to address what this group considers poor working conditions for factory workers in China, criticizing the company for not assigning any of its US$98 billion cash pile to address the issues.

"It's a coincidence that there's this big pile of cash at the time the supply chain issue has arisen. It takes a leap of faith to connect the two," Post said.

An argument can be made that Apple can use its cash reserve and giant profits to pay contractors like Foxconn extra to address the issues, Post said. But from a business perspective, it is naive to believe that Apple would voluntarily pay a higher price to contractors if it is possible to get products elsewhere at lower prices, Post said.

Apple's decision on how it wants to use its cash reserve may make financial sense, but there has to be accountability in the way Apple products are made, said Lior Malenboim, CEO of mobile application development company Applicasa. It is about thousands of workers being treated badly, while Apple shareholders, and Mac, iPhone and iPad owners sit at home in relative comfort, Malenboim said.

Malenboim last week suggested in an e-mail sent to journalists that Apple could have changed its public perception by offering a financial sum to improve lives of the factory workers. Malenboim said ten percent of the fund could have been used in a health plan for the approximately 230,000 factory workers, and twenty percent of the fund could be used to raise worker salaries.

"When the product that you are selling is the result of some 230,000 individuals hard work, those people deserve a fair wage as a human right," Malenboim said.

Apple did not immediately respond to request for comment.

 

Previous Page  1  2 

Sign up for MIS Asia eNewsletters.