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Employers made to pay for unpaid wages

By Zhou Mo in Shenzhen | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2017-01-19 19:23

More than 50 people were detained in Shenzhen last year for refusing to pay more than 30 million yuan owed to employees, the city's labor and public security officials said on Thursday.

In the most serious case, a local technology company owed more than 1,000 of its employees nearly 21 million yuan.

In most cases, 68.9 percent, the amount involved was less than 500,000 yuan.

More than half of the unlawful practices occurred in the manufacturing industry, according to the officials.

Of the 87 cases filed last year, 48 were related to manufacturing.

Catering and accommodation took up about 5.7 percent, while 5 per cent of offences related to architecture.

Unpaid wages also started to appear in Shenzhen's financial sector, with five cases occuring last year.

"The majority of suspects still adopt the traditional way of escaping or hiding, but some use a new method to achieve their goal by transferring assets," Lin Danping, deputy head of the city's labor inspection unit, said.

"We will strengthen cooperation with public security departments to combat such practices and hold those suspects responsible according to the law."

Cai Chengrong from the public security bureau of Shenzhen said that compared with 2015, the number of cases filed and suspects detained both declined in 2016.

"This indicates that our crackdown efforts have taken effect and malpractice has been effectively curbed," he said.

The issue of labor remuneration is a widespread concern, especially as traditional Chinese New Year approaches and a large number of migrant workers in Shenzhen finish a year's work and return home.

However, some of them do not go home with all the wages they have earned.

To try to prevent this, Shenzhen has been stepping up efforts to crack down on the illegal act since October.

By the end of last year, 8,447 enterprises and organizations had been inspected, involving more than 730,000 people.

Contact the writer at sally@chinadailyhk.com

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