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The Forum > Article Comments > Chinese migrant workers' welcome back to poverty > Comments

Chinese migrant workers' welcome back to poverty : Comments

By Brian Hennessy, published 9/3/2009

Chinese people know how to endure suffering. These stoic unemployed migrant workers will endure, or so the government hopes.

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A good and sensitive article on the disinfranchised in general, but I was disappointed with your focus on Taiwan being the primary villain. This was poorly researched and requires clarification.

The coastal industrial strip incorporates clusters of small to middle size foreign national investment industries. (ie Hong Kong, Taiwan, South Korea etc.) It is not difficult to identify the Taiwanese concentrations.

Do a check on the companies that have closed in Guangdong alone and you will find that while Taiwan does have investment in Guangdong, a major proportion of investment in the small to middle sized consumer goods manufacturers here are Hong Kong and mainland operators.

You also failed to comment on the many mainland Chinese contractors that failed to pay tens of thousands of migrant construction workers. Many of these came from the Sichuan region.

There is also the upstream and downstream effect in which mainland owned companies in the supply and distribution chain have made a substantial contribution to the 20 million layoffs, including many that also refused to pay workers.

The "single industry centres" are also another serious additional contributor to unemployment that is local. These are communities and towns that rely on a single product, (ie socks, ties, cigarette lighters, shoes etc) to supply labour, components, raw material processing, and services.)

While the media has focussed on the Hong Kong firms, there are no single foreign "villains" in the 20 million unemployed and mainland China companies must equally share the blame.

Arthur Thomas
10 March, 2009
Posted by Arthur T, Tuesday, 10 March 2009 1:01:07 PM
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