Campaign thwarts attempts to dodge contract law

By Chen Hong (China Daily)
Updated: 2007-12-13 07:41

SHENZHEN: Efforts to explain and publicize the new Labor Contract Law have thwarted many attempts to dodge the provisions included in it, but violations still occur, an official of a worker's union said Wednesday.

"We have been keeping an eye out for any abnormal redundancies and it appears the situation is improving," Xie Liangmin, sub-chief of the legal affairs department of the All China Federation of Trade Unions, said during a visit to this southern city.

However, a company in Guangdong Province was recently found to have fired a group of contract workers and then rehired them through a manpower services company, Xie said.

"All attempts by companies to evade their responsibility to take care of their employees will be punished after the detailed regulations of the Labor Contract Law are issued," he said.

The federation is working closely with the authorities to draw up detailed regulations, the release of which is likely to be postponed until the first quarter of next year, Xie said.

Although the federation has publicly criticized two companies - IT equipment manufacturer Huawei Technology and retail giant Wal-Mart - for attempting to dodge some parts of the law before it takes effect on January 1, no punishments have been handed down.

Dong Ping, an official with the Ministry of Labor and Social Security, called on companies to come to terms with the legislation.

"The law provides an opportunity for companies to develop harmonious and stable working relationships with their employees within a more competitive environment. A successful company always respects its employees and abides by the law," Dong told a forum on promoting the new law.

Terry Guo, CEO of Foxconn Technology, a leading IT manufacturer with operations in Shenzhen, said it would give its full support to the Labor Contract Law.

"The new law will prod companies into becoming more efficient and upgrading their technology. It should help them accelerate their strategic repositioning and restructuring," Guo said.

He said Foxconn will work to improve the quality of its staff, save energy and encourage innovation to offset expected rises in its operational costs.

The company has also revised its human resources policy and internal regulations to bring them in line with the Labor Contract Law.

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