Zim probes worker abuse by Chinese firms

2012-05-01 18:42

Harare - Zimbabwe's labour minister says the government is investigating persistent reports of rampant abuse of workers by Chinese employers.

Labour minister Paurina Mupariwa told a Workers' Day celebration on Tuesday that a team of investigators has started visiting Chinese construction and mining companies to compile details of alleged abuses.

Labour officials say workers have complained of physical abuse by Chinese managers, earnings below the legal minimum, extended working hours and negligence over health and safety conditions.

Years of political and economic turmoil have seen an influx of Chinese businesses in a "Look East" policy announced by President Robert Mugabe to replace Western investors scared off by human rights violations and a black empowerment programme that envisions seizure of 51% of foreign-owned firms, excluding Chinese.

Read more on:    zimbabwe  |  labour  |  southern africa

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