There is a strong argument in favour of accepting lower labour standards in developing nations — roughly, they can’t afford high standards, and low standards attract foreign investment which drives economic prosperity. But the consent of the workers involved is typically a key part of that argument, and that consent is not always there, or always as informed as it should be. >>>
…Over the past two years we have interviewed multiple experts and 70 workers at 15 Chinese factories. Our investigation suggests that while some Chinese companies raised wages and reduced working hours, other problems with workplace health and safety remain unresolved. In many cases, companies have merely pushed the problems outward from their own factories to contractors and subcontractors, where compliance is more difficult to enforce. The underlying dynamic has not changed: Squeezed by global brands to produce ever-cheaper high tech products, Chinese factories continue to cut corners on safety…..