After facing criticism for its alliance with its manufacturing partner Foxconn, Apple recently announced that factory workers will be seeing a 16% – 25% increase in wages. According to Reuters, the pay of a junior-level worker at the Shenzhen plant in China grew from 1,800 yuan per month, and it could continue to go beyond 2,200 yuan if the workers pass a technical examination. When comparing this to what the pay was three years ago (900 yuan), it is quite the a difference. This announcement from Foxconn comes just a few days after the Fair Labor Association began inspecting its facilities as part of an independent audit requested by Apple. The FLA said after its initial visit that Foxconn’s iPad manufacturing plant is “first class,” with conditions far better than garment factories in China. It should be noted Foxconn last boosted employee wages in June 2010 following an increased number of suicides that occurred at the company’s massive factory in Shenzhen. The manufacturer said Friday that the basic salary of its junior workers is already ‘far higher than the minimum wage.” Furthermore, the company also said that they “will provide more training opportunities and learning time, and will continuously enhance technology, efficiency and salary, so as to set a good example for the Chinese manufacturing industry.” Many continue to question the situation of these factories ever since both Apple and Foxconn have come under scrutiny since the stories posted from The New York Times, which highlighted labor issues in Apple’s supply Chain. The NYT suggested that Apple had known about issues in its supply factories and had chosen to not address them, but Apple CEO, Tim Cook, was quick to call the claims “patently false and offensive.” We’ll find out on February 21st what Bill Weir was able to discover in his trip to the Shenzhen plant in China. Source: Reuters  

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