Foxconn rules out worker clashes stalled iPhone production
Beijing: Foxconn Technologies, the group behind manufacturing Apple’s iPhones, denied on Saturday that the Chinese factory workers engaged in clashes while both state media and an overseas labour watch group claim that production lines were halted due to issues in higher quality control standards.
New York-based China Labor Watch reported that 3,000 to 4,000 workers at the Foxconn plant in central China's Zhengzhou city went on strike on Friday over increased quality control demands and having to work during an extended national holiday.
Xinhua News Agency, quoting a spokesman for the management committee of the Xinzheng Comprehensive Bonded Area where the plant is located, said some production lines were halted on Friday when workers persuaded quality inspectors to skip work to show their dissatisfaction over higher quality standards.
In a written statement issued on Friday, the Taiwan-based electronic manufacturer Foxconn said production at the Zhengzhou plant continued without interruption. It denied any strike or work stoppage.
Foxconn said there were two isolated, small-scale disputes between production line workers and quality assurance personnel on Monday and Tuesday, but it added that they were quickly addressed.
It did not specify what issues had caused the disputes but said immediate measures were taken to resolve the problems, including adding production line workers.
Xinhua said some workers were unhappy when Apple strengthened quality inspections of the iPhone 5 following consumer complaints regarding aesthetic flaws in the phone.
In the Xinhua report, the spokesman who was not named characterized the incident as a worker-management dispute instead of a strike and was unable to provide a specific number of workers involved.
China Labor Watch said several iPhone 5 production lines at the factory were paralyzed after the workers found the new quality control demands difficult to meet and went on strike.
The group said the workers also were angry about being forced to work through China's National Day Golden Week holiday, which ends on Sunday.
With Agency Inputs