Workers outside Hundred Tex factory, Myanmar. (Photo: CTUM)

Workers outside Hundred Tex factory, Myanmar. (Photo: CTUM)

Garment workers in Myanmar are fighting back

28.02.2017

Workers at the Hundred Tex Garment factory in Yangon, Myanmar, are demanding owed overtime payment and better working conditions after a drawn-out conflict with the Chinese management.  

Many workers at the Chinese-owned Hundred Tex Garment factory in Myanmar have been paid less than the daily minimum wage of 3,600 kyat (US$2.7), have not received overtime payment according to the law, and the customary skills bonus has also been withheld.

An agreement between management and the union, backed by the Confederation Trade Unions of Myanmar (CTUM), was reached in December 2016.

However, the conflict has since escalated as Hundred Tex Garment has not upheld their part, and is also refusing to set up a workplace coordination committee, as required by Myanmar labour dispute settlement law.

The employer is clearly not respecting the outcome of the negotiations in December. There seems to be a lack of good faith from their part and we urge them to engage in dialogue and resolve the conflict,

says Christina Hajagos-Clausen, IndustriALL textile director.

On 30 January, the union president Thet Paing Oo was dismissed when returning from a pre-agreed sick leave with medical certificate, sparking a strike among the workers the following day.

The Hundred Tex factory produces for Swedish fashion company H&M. IndustriALL and H&M signed a global framework agreement in September 2015, protecting the labour rights of 1.6 million workers in H&M’s global supply chain.

There has been several attempts from the union and H&M to resolve the conflict with the factory owner.

Until there is well functioning industrial relations, all of H&M’s business is on hold with Hundred Tex,

says Johan Stellansson at H&M.