Labour News


Nearly 400 workers from the Jiapan Oil Seal Products Factory in Shenzhen have gone on strike in the cold weather earlier this month.  Affected by the Fuyong Innovation Facelift Project, the Japanese owned rubber parts manufacturer plans to relocate its production plant to the Bao’an District in 2018.  Despite the imminent relocation, the employer has yet to consult nor compensate the workers as stipulated by the law.  Thus, the workers went on strike and prevented the removal of machineries from the factory on January 8 and demanded compensations in relocation, social security, housing provident, and annual leaves.  But with the assistance from the Public Security Department, police was dispatched to harass the workers’ action and arrested five workers, who were later released on the same evening.



Under the adverse conditions of cold weather and crackdown from the police, the workers were forced to strike an agreement with the employer after one day of struggle.  An announcement was made on the same day that 3,000 yuan was given to the workers as compensation and rewards, while the workers announce the conclusion of the collective action.


PC Accessories Makers Delayed Workers’ Payout Despite Receiving 177 Million for Factory Relocation


Jan 2018


In China, many people believe that the Winter Solstice Festival is even more important the Lunar New Year.  However, on the day before last year’s Winter Solstice, workers at the Shenzhen HEC factory were forced to occupy the factory to defend their rights.


On December 21, 2017, a strike broke out at the Taiwanese owned HEC Enterprise’s production plant in Shenzhen, a leading global manufacturer and designer of PC Cases and Power Supplies.  Earlier in October, the factory published a memo announcing that the Shenzhen production plant will be demolished and relocated to Dongguan in December.  However, until late December, the company still refused to negotiate with the workers’ representatives, while settlement on workers placements and compensations were put on hold, forcing the workers to go on strike and occupied the factory to stop the relocation.  On the same evening, the company eventually agreed to the workers’ demands on severance compensations and wage arrangements during the relocation period.


Workers went on strike and occupied the factory on December 21, 2017


In fact, according to Taiwan's Apple Daily, HEC would receive 177 million yuan in compensation for the land redevelopment project and currently has production plants in Jiangxi and Dongguang manufacturing PC power supplies, cases, and other accessories.  Moreover, the company’s gaming brand, Cougar, is also capitalizing on the eSports upsurge, and saw its turnover soared by 50% last year.  Thus, the company’s initial refusal to negotiate and compensate the workers was neither responsible nor acceptable.  And by rightfully claiming their rights, workers at HEC Shenzhen were able to avoid a miserable Winter Solstice Festival.

Workers Fights for Their Rights as Power Cords Giant Turns Factory into Real Estates Project


Dec 2017


In line with the development plan of the Chinese Government, the Taiwanese owned Linetek Electronic, a leading manufacturer of electric power cords in the world, decided to relocate one of its four major subsidiary factories, the Everfull Electronics, from Shenzhen to Huizhou.


Construction of the Shenzhen Metro Line 4 is next to the Everfull Longhua Factory


Nearly 1,000 workers in the factory, many of them are dispatched workers, have yet to receive any formal explanation regarding the relocation of factories from the management, nor have they been notified of their rights and interests.  Thus, nearly 1,000 workers went on strike on 25 and 26 November 2017, demanding the company to present written statements and initiate collective bargaining with regard to the placements of the affected workers (including all dispatched workers).


Everfull is a subsidiary of the Linetek Electronic


According to Taiwanese media reports, Linetek Electronic has partnered with Megaworld, a real estate development enterprise, to jointly develop old factories into real estate projects in Shenzhen three years ago.  The old factory area in Shenzhen is located in the center of the Megaworld’s development zone, which is also the future exit of the Shenzhen Metro Line 4 Hangqian Station.  However, instead of compensating and relocating the workers in a responsible manner, Linetek Electronics continues to disregard the workers’ demands, which led to an inevitable strike.

Thousand Went on Strike as the World’s Largest Mobile Phone Screen Producer Plans to Move


Dec 2017


More than 1000 workers went on strike at the Biel Crystal Production plant in Shenzhen, when news of plant relocation to Huizhoun broke out earliers.  On December 7, the workers protested to the Shenzhen Longgang Municipal Office and demanded the government to intervene.


Biel Crystal denied the news of relocation, but at the meantime, also refused to present the workers with any written confirmation.  According to various internet sources, some workers are still on strike and demanded the employers:


1.  To provide written confirmation regarding plant relocation;

2.  To pay all social security and housing provident in arrear.



As the world's largest mobile phone screen producer, Biel Crystal accounted for 60% of the global screen production and two-thirds of IPhone screen production share. Production bases are located in Shenzhen and Huizhou to establish, with a total annual output value of 30 billion yuan.


Despite denying plant relocation, the management continues to push for "relocations packages" and encouraged workers to voluntarily relocate to the Huizhou plant


Yeung Kin-Man and his wife, the founders of Biel Crystal, are native Hong Kong capitalists who rank eighth in the 2017 Forbes’ Hong Kong Rich List.  Regardless of their wealth, the employers expose their irresponsibility in misconducts such as indifference to the demands of the workers in Shenzhen, suspicion to concealing the news of relocation and evading responsibilities in social security and housing provident fund.

Civil Society in Hong Kong Protest Against the Eviction of the Urban Poor in Beijing


Dec 2017


While the Beijing Municipal Government was busy evicting the so-called “low-end population” in the city, there was another “high-end seminar” in the name of “Beijing Hong Kong Economic Cooperation Symposium” taking place in Hong Kong while the Mayor of Beijing, Chen Jining, was presented at the opening ceremony.  Thus, the HKCTU, in collaboration with some other 40 members of the civil society took the opportunity to voice out our concerns by staging a protest at the Symposium (Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre) on Nov 29 and demanded the Beijing Municipal Government to stop all evictions of the urban poor immediately.



However, what makes us even angrier is the undemocratic urban planning and demographic policies behind the eviction. Once again, the eviction highlights a handful of authorities and capitalists’ blatant disregard of basic labour rights by treating the migrant workers as “disposable ones", despite their contributions to the prosperity of the city. Although the police blocked our way of expressing our demands to the elites inside the venue, it still did not impede us from condemning their indifference to labour dignity.



Apart from civil society organizations in Hong Kong, a number of trade unionists from France and Brazil also participated in the protest to show that there is no boundary to workers solidarity. In the meantime, our public statement cosignatory will be continued. Organizations are welcome to sign up online at the following website:

Labour Activists Meng Han Arrested Again


Sep 2017


Guangdong labour activist, Meng Han, is again taken away by the authorities today (22/9) after being released from prison just earlier this month.  According to reports, 8 policemen from the Guangzhou Nansha Jinzhou Police Station took away Meng Han from his apartment at around 2:30 p.m.  Although the cause of his arrest has yet to be confirmed, but it is believed that it is related to the publication of his “Prison Notebooks” posted on his own blog, which is now deleted by the officials.


In his “Notebooks”, Meng recollects his experiences in organizing the Lide Strike of 2014, which led to his subsequently arrest and imprisonment.  He also expressed his views on the labour movement and his will to fight for workers' rights in China.  Thus, the HKCTU is astounded to learn that the Chinese Government again arrested Meng Han for a crime he never commits and demands the immediate release of him.


Updated on 26/9:

After about 6 hours of detention at the local police station, Meng was later released on the same night. The Police alleged that his arrest was due to his release of "Prison Notebooks".  Meng was slightly injured in a bust-up with the police.



Factory “Shammed” Bankruptcy, 300 Electronics Factory Workers Went on Strike in Shenzhen


Sep 2017


Last month (August 2017), more than 300 workers from the Shenzhen mobile phone motherboard manufacturer, Jielai Technology Co., Ltd. went on strike to recover back wages from the month of June, but the company suddenly announced bankruptcy in 29 August. Hence, the worker escalated their actions. In addition to recover outstanding wages, they also demanded for statutory severance payment, and guarded the factory to prevent transfer of assets by the company.


The Jielai workers criticized the bankruptcy is of "malicious" intent because the employer has already set up factories in Yunnan, Chongqing and Zhengzhou and more than half of the production lines in Shenzhen have moved to these plants ever since. Moreover, Jielai were not lacking in orders from their major customer, "Waterworth", an up and coming mobile phone company founded in 2009. Therefore, the workers believed that the employer “shammed” the bankruptcy to hide the real intention in plant relocation in order to evade paying the workers severance payments.


On 4 September, the court seized the assets of the employer and forced the employer to negotiate with the workers. A settlement was eventually reached with the employer promised to pay all the wages in arrears and 60% of the statutory severance payments.



In order to reduce labor costs, many manufacturers in the Pearl River Delta Region are transferring productions to further inland in recent years. But some unscrupulous employers have tried to avoid payments of severance for workers in the past, which is similar to that of the Hong Kong's catering industry some ten years ago. After dissolving one restaurant, some restaurant owners continued to operate other restaurants under separate company registrations, leaving severance payment for workers eventually paid off by the "Protection of Wages on Insolvency Fund" (the Fund). In 2012, a restaurant owner was sentenced to three years' of imprisonment after found guilty in fraud of the Fund. Therefore, if local governments in China do not face up to this problem by severely punishing employers that “sham” bankruptcies, it is likely that similar incidents will continue to occur.

Tough Guy Meng Han is Released from Prison


Sep 2017


On September 3, after 21 months of imprisonment, labour activist Meng Han is set free again.


Since Xi Jinping came to power, Chinese civil society and activists are experiencing a very difficult period.  Earlier this year, the treatment and death of Liu Xiaobo shocked the world.  But almost at the same time, rights defending lawyer, Jiang Tianyong, who has been beaten on a number of occasions was forced to plead guilty and sentenced.  Thus, it is not surprising that even the toughest guys fell one after another to the terrors of torture and threats to their love ones. A year ago in Guangdong, there was another tough guy who was forced to plead guilty to a crime he never committed, he name is Meng Han.


In 2013, Meng participated in a collective labour action with other security guards in the No.1 Affiliated Hospital of Guangzhou University of Traditional Chinese Medicine and was elected as the “chief representative” in the negotiation with the management. However, he was then dismissed and along with 17 other workers, he was sentenced to nine-month imprisonment on charges of “Inciting a crowd to disrupt public order”. At his defence speech in court, he insisted, “As a worker in contemporary China, I would prefer to spend the rest of my life in prison if the rights to decent work is deprived,” and after his release, he proclaimed, “the government must stop its abuse of power to suppress labour rights defending, and we must sacrifice for the cause of rights defending.  I am prepared for this sacrifice.”


Upon his release, Meng Han joined the Panyu Migrant Workers Services Centre to continue his fight for labour rights and successfully helped more than 3,000 workers in defending their rights in the Guangzhou Lide Shoe Factory Strike.  However, what lay ahead of him was another arrest and prosecution.  On December 3, 2017, he was one of the 27 labour activists in Guangzhou being arrested and detained.  And among the four who were later sentenced, Meng Han was the last one to be trailed because he was the most "troubled" one.  After his arrest, Meng said, "As my case is not going to be resolved in the near future, I have no intention to compromise with them (the officials) on my conscience and morality." "In this case, I have a clear conscience."  In fact, Meng Han’s determination remained resolute until his parents were intimidated, his companions were under surveillance and loved one was harassed.  Meng was forced to compromise and pleaded guilty and was finally sentenced to 21 months in prison.  But this would not tarnish our respect for him, nor would it tarnish his image as a labour rights defender.

We Are Sold As “Pigs”—A Testimony of A Chinese Migrant Worker Under The “Belt and Road” Initiative


Sep 2017


As a top Chinese national policy, the "Belt and Road" Initiative is not only exporting capital, technology, and labour on a large scale, but also transplanting common labour disputes of domestic enterprises to overseas in recent years. In an article published on August 24, "Voice of America" interviewed a Chinese migrant worker working in Africa, Li Dong (pseudonym), who witnesses the hardships endured by overseas Chinese migrant workers.


Motivated by the ideals to "achieve something big in a foreign country under the ‘Belt and Road’ Initiative” university graduate Li Dong, followed the state-owned enterprise Energy China Guangxi Hydroelectric Construction Bureau (GHCB) to work in Angola one year ago. But unfortunately, contrary to his ideals, there is a world of difference in reality.


During the year working for GHCB, Li Dong only received his pay cheque once and it only accounted to 40% of the normal salary as stated in his employment contract. Li further testifies that workers are forced to work 12 hours a day with no overtime pay and only allowed one rest day every two weeks. Days off are not given neither on Chinese nor local holidays, except two days of holidays on Chinese New Year. Moreover, the GHCB also refuses to pay medical insurance on the grounds that the company has bought overseas accident insurance for the employees, which no one has ever seen the policy. And cases of arrears of wages are common despite GHCB is a state owned enterprise. For instance, Li Dong reveals that he heard some workers organized protest after they have not been paid for more three years, and although they were able to recover their wages, all workers who participated in the protest were eventually repatriated.


In addition to long hours and intensive workloads, personal safety of the workers are also constantly under threat. Chinese are often targeted in a number of robberies or killings since the end of the Angolan civil war in 2002. Thus, the company prohibits employees from leaving their quarters after work, which makes little difference from living in a prison. Nevertheless, some workers are still robbed on working sites, while all losses must be borne by the workers themselves.


Despite feeling "disappointed, angry, and want to resign", Li Dong plans to continue to work in Angola for another half a year. Because the company will not reimburse the air fare and visa fee until one year and half of employment.


"We are like the pigs in the past and being exploited here," says Li Dong, referring to the Chinese labourers who had signed slave contracts to work as coolie overseas during the turn of 20th Century, "the difference is that instead of the white people of past, the exploiters nowadays are the state-owned enterprises.”


Source: Voice of America

Liu Xiaobo: A Lifelong Fighter for Democracy, May His Soul Rest in Peace


Jul 2017


Tonight (15/7/2017), we are deeply grieved to mourn the tragic death of the Nobel Peace Prize laureate, Liu Xiaobo. But sadness cannot conceal our anger towards the regime of the Chinese Communist Party. As an intellectual, Liu was arrested and sentenced to 11 years in prison for proposing constitutional reform, human rights and democracy. Liu lost his freedom, and eventually, dedicated his life just because he had the courage to speak up his mind. In 2010, the Norwegian Nobel Committee decided to award Liu Xiaobo the Nobel Peace Prize dispute huge pressure from the Chinese Government. The empty chair and his photo in the ceremony is still a memorable scene until today.


7 years after the ceremony, Liu Xiaobo was diagnosed with terminal liver cancer in prison. Although the government officials claimed that monthly health checks were carried out in prison, Liu’s health was still allowed to deteriorate to a state that was untreatable. Should his disease to be treated adequately in an earlier stage, Liu Xiaobo’s untimely death may have been avoided.


Liu Xiaobo once said ‘I have no enemy’, but he was supressed by the regime that treated him as an enemy, resulting to a tragic end to his respectable life. In his final stages of life, the Communist Party still refused Liu’s request to choose the methods and locations of medical treatment of his own will.



As his death has become irreversible, we must now turn our attention to the condition of his wife, Liu Xia, who has been put under house arrest since the imprisonment of Liu Xiaobo. In light of the experiences that family members of Li Wangyang’s had to put up with after Li’s death, it is conceivable that Liu Xia will be subjected to further hardship and surveillance in future. The Communist regime must stop the house arrest put on Liu Xia, and ensure her freedom will not be obstructed.


The Chinese Communist Party’s dictatorship seems to be indissoluble at the moment, but we will not give up. We will be even more persistent to fight for democracy in the future, because we believe that only persistence will bring success.


May Liu Xiaobo’s soul rest in peace.

As Saipan Casino Opens, Migrant Construction Workers Still Fighting for Wages & Injury Compensations


Jul 2017


July 10, 2017


The casino is scheduled to open [soon] and will earn Imperial Pacific millions of dollars. But neither the casino nor the companies it hired has paid us – the workers – even the minimum wage for the hours that we spent building it. This is unfair and unjust. Imperial Pacific should pay the money that we are owed. We will protest until we are paid what we have earned and the injured workers receive proper and just treatment.


                                        -- Protesting workers on Saipan, July 3, 2017


On May 16, 2017, we called on allies to demand that the Hong Kong-based Imperial Pacific International Holdings Limited remedy the abusive labor conditions on its $500 million casino project in Saipan, a U.S. Commonwealth. As of July 6, the casino is now open, but the Chinese migrant workers who built it – doing grueling work for long hours under dangerous conditions – still have not been legally compensated.


These workers were never paid the minimum wage, and some were not paid at all. Injured workers were never taken to see a doctor, let alone compensated for their injuries. Two contractors reached a settlement with the U.S. Department of Labor to remedy wage violations for some of their employees, but hundreds of workers still have not been paid the minimum wage or overtime.


Imperial Pacific engaged some of China’s largest construction contractors to build the casino on the fast and cheap. These companies include the state-run China Metallurgical Group (MCC), Nanjing Beilida New Material System Engineering, Suzhou Gold Mantis Construction Decoration, and CMC Macao. There was no concern for worker safety: a federal agency fined these contractors nearly $200,000 after finding 20 serious violations of health and safety regulations, including fraudulent injury records, unguarded machines, unsecured and unsafe scaffolding, and inadequate fall protection. One worker fell 24 feet to his death because of inadequate safety precautions. The companies did not buy workers’ compensation insurance, refused to provide medical attention to workers, and have not compensated the injured workers.


At least 40 of these workers remain on Saipan and have been demanding legal compensation for all who labored on the site, including those who returned to China. They demonstrated outside the casino on May 25, 2017, but received no response. They protested again on June 22 and then on July 3. One contractor offered its former employees $5,000 and a plane ticket if they returned home to China. The workers refused, stating that they must all get paid.


It is no longer enough for Imperial Pacific to “denounce” the abuse of these workers; it must ensure that they are paid legally and treated humanely. We, therefore, demand that Imperial Pacific take immediate action to:


1. Reimburse the recruitment fees paid to obtain work with these contractors;

2. Compensate each hour worked according to minimum wage and overtime laws; and

3. Ensure injured workers receive medical treatment and fair compensation for the injuries suffered building the casino.


You Can Take Action Too:



  • Email Imperial Pacific (⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠ to demand that all exploited casino workers receive the pay and compensation to which they are entitled, and please CC .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on your email.



Selected Media Coverage:


Emily Feng, Chinese workers protest against Hong Kong casino on US island, Financial Times, July 6, 2017.


Cherrie Anne E. Villahermosa, ‘We will protest until we get paid’, Marianas Variety, July 4, 2017.


Video: 仍有四十多名中国工人被困塞班岛, 美国之音, 2017年6月30日。


Erwin Encinares, Workers say processing taking too long, Saipan Tribune, June 23 2017.




Neil Gough and Cao Li, U.S. Investigates Work at Pacific Island Casino Project With Trump TiesNew York Times, May 4, 2017 (中文版).


Saipan casino workers protest for payment as FBI cites illegal laborReuters, April 14, 2017.

Freedom of Speech is not a crime! Release labour rights activist Liu Shaoming now!


Jul 2017



Labour rights activist Liu Shaoming, who has been indicted of “inciting subversion of state power” for publishing online memoirs of his recollections of the 1989 pro-democracy movement was sentenced to 4 and a half years in prison on July 7, 2017, which is close to the maximum penalty (5 years sentence) of the crime.


The Hong Kong Confederation of Trade Unions and a number of Hong Kong based labour NGOs strongly protest the Chinese government’s repression of freedom of speech.  We deem that the sentence handed down to Liu Shaoming was overly severe and the heavy sentence indicates that the Chinese Government’s intention to further control freedom of speech.  In fact, an online memoir was already enough to infuriate the nerves of the regime and instigated the authorities to devise such heavy sentence in dealing with those who dare to tell the truth.


In a similar situation, Nobel Peace Prize Laurate, Liu Xiaobo, was also sentenced to long prison term for expressing himself.  Being locked up behind bars for years and deprived of adequate medical attention, Liu was recently diagnosed terminal hepatic cancer while his health condition is deteriorating rapidly.  However, his request for leaving China to attend medical care was repeatedly rejected by the Chinese government in afraid that he may speak freely against the regime in another country.  In order to cover up the truth, the Chinese Government even denies dissidents’ rights to die in an honorable manner.


On the day of Liu Shaoming’s trial, about 20 representatives from the HKCTU and Hong Kong Labour NGOs gathered at the Liaison Office of the Central People's Government in HKSAR to protest against the Chinese Government’s suppression on freedom of association.  We reiterate that freedom of speech is not a crime and demand the unconditional release of Liu Shaoming and Liu Xiaobo.

Investigation on Corporate misconduct is not a crime. Free the labour activists now!


Jun 2017


On May 30th, three labour activists Hua Haifeng, Li Zhao and Su Heng were being arrested by Jiangxi public security when they were investigating labour conditions of a Huajian Group’s factory, which has manufactured Ivanka Trump’s branded shoes. Those labour activists are still kept under criminal detention for over 23 days, and are prosecuted for illegal use of eavesdropping equipment.


The development of global supply chain and the profit maximization of multinational corporations are at the expense of the labour rights and environmental protection. Corporates have rarely been prosecuted and local governments turn a blind eye to their misconducts, the violation of law has already become a norm of the corporate practice. Labour activists investigated the corporate misconducts by uncovering investigation; the aim of the investigation is to foster public understanding of corporate misconduct. This investigating method is often being used to find out the truth when there is a lack of labour rights in the society. Investigators who are manifesting social justice should not be regarded as illegal and being arrested.


It is noted that the labour activists were being arrested when the factory found out they obtained adequate evidence that the factory of Huajian Group violates the labour laws and the misuse of student workers. The misconduct of the factory is liable to prosecution and punitive actions should be taken in accordance with the laws. Yet, three labour activists who are investigating illegal acts of the corporation are being arrested, instead of the Huajian Group, which objectively violate the public genuine rights to know, and prevent the world from knowing the truth.


As a group of labour NGOs concerning China labour rights, we believed the arrest is an act of collusion between the corporation and the local government to suppress labour activists. The petition contains the following demands:

1. The Jiangxi government should immediately release the labour activists- Hua Haifeng, Li Zhao and Su Heng;
2. Impose punishments on Huajian Group’s misconduct, and proceed to rectify the problem immediately;
3. Ensure public’s right to obtain information. Shame on criminal detention, not corporate misconduct investigation!


You can sign the Petition in the following link:


Signed by,

1. Asia Monitor Resource Centre
2. Globalization Monitor
3. Worker Empowerment
4. Hong Kong Confederation of Trade Unions
5. Labour Education and Service Network
6. Labour Action China
7. Students and Scholars against Corporate Misbehaviour
8. Borderless Movement
9. China Labour Bulletin
10. Korean House for International Solidarity
11. Worker's Initiative - Kolkata
Sedane Association
13. Justice & Peace Commission of the H.K. Catholic Diocese
14. International Fire Fighters
15. Yokohama Action Research
and Worker's Service Centre
17. Clean Clothes Campaign East Asia Coalition
18. No Chains


Contact person: Ming Lam 94934368

200 Hong Kongers Commemorate the Death of Labour Rights Movement Hero Li Wangyang


Jun 2017


June 6 marks the fifth anniversary of the labour movement hero Li Wangyang’s death.  Five years ago, the wronged death of Li instigated an uproar both domestically and internationally, inspiring 25,000 Hong Kong people took to the streets to demand for his justice.  Nowadays, the Chinese Government is still trying to distort the truth in insisting that Li committed suicide, while Li’s sister, Li Wangling, brother in law Zhao Baozhu, friends Zhu Chengzi and Yin Zhenan are still under surveillance.



Inspired by the Polish Solidarity Union Movement, Li started to organize workers and advocated democratic awareness in the community during the early Eighties.  However, his wishes to see Chinese workers to enjoy the right to freedom of association has yet to be succeeded.  In recent years, the Chinese Government has escalated her efforts in suppressing independent labour movement by interfering the operations of independent labour NOGs, as well as arresting and detaining labour activists.


Last night, more than 200 Hong Kong people gathered at the Tsim Sha Tsui Star Ferry Pier in a candlelight vigil commemorating Li Wangyang organized by the Hong Kong Confederation of Trade Unions.  It proved that Hong Kong people have not forgotten Li Wangyang and the atrocities inflicted on him by the regime.  Although his friends Zhao Baozhu, Zhu Chengzi, and Yin Zhenan were not able to attend the event, they recorded videos to express their condolences to their deceased friend, and express their gratitude for Hong Kong people’s support.  At the end of the event, the attendees offered flowers to commemorate Li Wangyang and support to his family and friends.  May we all wish that the justice will be brought upon the Li Wangwang’s death one day.

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