6 major companies promise wage negotiations in S China

Updated: 2011-08-10 06:57


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GUANGZHOU - Six major global companies operating in the southern Chinese economic hub of Guangzhou pledged to conduct wage negotiations with worker representatives in an agreement reached with the city's trade union on Tuesday.

The companies, all among the world's top 500 companies listed by Fortune Magazine, are McDonald's, Kentucky Fried Chicken, Trust-Mart, Siemens Transformer (Guangzhou) Co, Sony Electronics Huanan Co, and Matsushita Electric Works Electronic Material (Guangzhou) Co.

They were among the first batch of prominent companies in Guangzhou, capital of Guangdong province, to make such a commitment.

Within two years, all Fortune Global 500 companies in the city are expected to set up a wage-negotiation mechanism, said Chen Weiguang, head of the city's trade union.

Plagued by the recent acute labor shortages and walkouts, the companies have realized they must establish a long-term mechanism to increase workers' wages in a reasonable manner and have an effective platform to discuss the issue, said Jiang Bin, deputy head of the trade union of Matsushita.

"The companies are willing to negotiate with the trade union to ensure the smooth production year round," Jiang said.

Walkouts, caused by workers' demand for wage hikes, disrupted the operation of some companies, including Honda and Matsushita, in Guangdong last year.