Monday, July 31, 2006

First Labour Union Formed at Chinese Wal-Mart Store

Illustration from DesignWorks

From the AP, via KFSM:

BEIJING -- An official Chinese news agency says the first labor union at a Wal-Mart store in China has been formed following a lobbying campaign by the country's official union group. The official Xinhua News Agency reported today that 30 employees at a Wal-Mart store in the southeastern city of Quanzhou, in Fujian province, voted Saturday to form a union.

The news agency said a 29-year-old employee named Ke Yunlong was elected chairman of its seven-member committee.

The official All-China Federation of Trade Unions has been lobbying Wal-Mart tores Inc. for two years to organize employees of its 60 stores in China. The federation had accused the company of obstructing its efforts.

Wal-Mart opened its first Chinese outlet in 1996 and says it has 28,000 employees in China. It says it plans to add 18 to 20 stores on the mainland this year. Phone calls today to Wal-Mart's China headquarters in the southern city of Shenzhen weren't answered.

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