February saw nearly 30 industrial disputes across China, according to labour movement NGO China Labour Bulletin (CLB).
The strikes took place across a wide range of industries around a range of demands focusing on pay, hours, terms and conditions. Four of the disputes centres on management plans to relocate workplaces or unreasonable employee deployment. One strike took place when workers previously employed by German manufacturer Putzmeister demanded a higher compensation package after the company was sold to Sany Heavy Industries (the largest Sino-German business transaction in history). Sany is run by Liang Wengen, one of the China’s richest men with an estimated personal wealth of over $10 billion. Many commentators and analysts expect him to soon join the Chinese Communist Party’s central committee.
5,000 workers at the Hanzhong Steel Company staged a three-day strike demanding pay increases. Some of them are paid as little as ¥1,000 (slightly over £100) per month.
According to CLB, dozens of workers were detained in each strike.
• China Labour Bulletin here
• CLB’s strike map here