Myanmar – Human rights violations by Chinese investors against workers in Myanmar exacerbates
Location: Yangon- Myanmar
Restriction: A24 Clients
Chinese investments and businesses witness human rights violations against workers, as about 600 cases were registered against them worldwide, of which Myanmar had the largest share with 97 cases between 2013 and 2020, according to the reports of the Business and Human Rights Resource Center (BHRRC). Two female workers in a factory to Chinese investors expressed how they were exposed to many human rights violations inside the factory and how did the Chinese owners deal with the workers, especially by not giving them their rights. On the other hand, the Myanmar authorities, whether before or after the coup, did not take any action regarding these violations or the abuse, which exacerbated these violations to inform the owners that they will not be punished.
(Soundbites): (Ma Thuzar (Fake name) – Worker and one of the members of Myanmar Labor Union):
“It’s more than 600 cases between 2013 and 2020 about abuse, violation, and breaking rule upon the laborers during investing businesses in a whole world. Here, Myanmar with the highest record of 97 cases among others, but it can be more than that. Because there will be some places where BHRRC (Business and Human Rights Resource Centre) can’t be reachable to collect records. Another one is, a lot of sexual harassment cases like an insinuating manner happening to female laborers inside the factory. Those factories are mostly owned by Chinese investors. And also, they’re touching them accidentally or purposely doing to female laborers. In this kind of case, some of the laborers didn’t dare to talk, so suffered the consequences like harassing more and more. So, this is what every each of the factories suffers these kinds of violations. There are more human rights abuses and labor violation cases that occurred in Chinese investing factories. Just because, if any controversy or problem happened between owners and laborers, laborers always lost and suffered as result. Chinese business investors hired gangs to beat the laborers. Even these kinds of notorious gangs beat the laborers, and even also we have proof and evidence, the authorities of Myanmar couldn’t do anything. The authorities didn’t dare to touch Chinese business investors. Inside Chinese-owned factories, there is no case that the authorities solve fairly even the investors break official rules and regulations. Even more, standing along on the side of investors and protecting them, also talking irresponsibly like they owned the factory, they can do whatever they want. So that’s why we laborers tried to complain to the Ministry department, even in there, the minister tier person giving undutiful words like they are worried about no further incoming foreign investment in here, and initiated us into a slave.”
(Soundbites): (Ma Khin Lay (Fake name) – One of the factory labors):
“In here, the factories are the same in the working process, and some are not the same working process. These are just different factories but the laborers are oppressed and human rights violations are the same caused by the investors. In there, Chinese-owned factories are too terrifically worse than others. They used legs instead of fingers to order the laborers to work, even sometimes they physically violate upon the laborers to order inside factories. After the coup, the owner does more and more oppression on the workers than before, all the laborers suffering from oppression and human rights violations. When we laborers tried to complain to the head of the labor organization, the owner threatens us like we were fired, this is what laborers facing now. Even in the previous elected government era, the head of labor organization doesn’t make anything strong fair when we tried to complain to them about labor rights violations. That’s why, at the current moment, we can’t complain to them. And so, the oppression on the labors getting strong and a lot of cases are happening. No one can help to claim justice even we try to make a report or complain about those abuses, now we are helpless. And now we are suffering oppression and violation to not getting fired by the investors, or else we going to lose our job.”