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Meituan announces changes to working conditions after official goes undercover

By DU JUAN | | Updated: 2021-04-29 20:27
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Deliverymen from Meituan Waimai rest at a street corner in Beijing. [Photo/CHINA NEWS SERVICE]

As International Workers' Day approaches, China's major online food delivery platform Meituan announced the company will improve the work conditions of deliverymen after a government official in the capital experienced one day of delivery work, being exhausted after 12 hours' duty and making only 41 yuan ($6).

Wang Lin, deputy head of the labor relations department of the Beijing Municipal Human Resources and Social Security Bureau, volunteered to work as a deliveryman at Meituan platform for a day undercover. He completed five orders during his 12-hour shift.

He said he hoped to make 100 yuan for the day, which he failed because it was much harder than he thought.

"The platform will cut 60 percent of the delivery fee if an order is delivered late," he said.

After his experience was reported by Chinese media, it aroused heated discussion about the platform, whose requirements for deliverymen are considered too strict.

On late Wednesday, Meituan announced it will improve working conditions for its vast network of deliverymen.

The company said it held meetings to discuss queries and recommendations from deliverymen to improve their working experiences, including addressing order allocation mechanisms, a green channel for appeals and adding extra holidays for deliverymen to look after their families.

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