'Modern slavery' in Malaysia factories| MENAFN.COM

Wednesday, 19 January 2022 04:38 GMT

'Modern slavery' in Malaysia factories


(MENAFN- The Peninsula) Nearly one-third of the 350,000 workers in Malaysia's electronics manufacturing sector - a major supplier for leading global brands - suffer labour conditions akin to "modern slavery".

The study by US-based fair-labour organisation Verite said at least 28 percent of workers toiling in Malaysian electronics factories - particularly foreign migrants from impoverished nearby countries - were stuck in a spiral of indentured servitude, unable to pay off excessive recruitment fees.

Verite said the study was commissioned by the US government, which bans the import of goods made with forced labour.

Forced labour was found "in significant numbers across all major producing regions, electronics products, foreign worker nationalities, and among both female and male workers," said the report, based on interviews with 501 electronics workers across the country.

"These results suggest that forced labour is present in the Malaysian electronics industry, and can indeed be characterised as widespread." The report did not single out any companies. But the sector's success rests in part on the backs of impoverished and vulnerable foreign workers from countries led by Indonesia, Nepal, India, Vietnam, Bangladesh and Burma, the Verite report said.

It said its assessment of the problem was likely "conservative" and "should be understood as a minimum estimate".


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