Violent Protests Erupt at Apple's Main IPhone Plant in China
Comment of the Day

November 23 2022

Commentary by Eoin Treacy

Violent Protests Erupt at Apple's Main IPhone Plant in China

This article for Bloomberg may be of interest to subscribers. Here is a section:

In one video, irate workers surrounded a silent, downcast manager in a conference room to voice grievances and question their Covid test results. It wasn’t clear when the meeting took place.

“I’m really scared about this place, we all could be Covid positive now,” a male worker said. “You are sending us to death,” another person said.

The Zhengzhou campus was operating normally as of Wednesday evening, a Foxconn spokesperson said. The violence had erupted after a portion of recently arrived employees raised complaints about “work subsidies” -- bonuses or payments on top of usual wages, Foxconn said in a statement. But the company stressed that it handles all such compensation in strict accordance with its contractual obligations. 

“With regards to the violence, we are continuing to communicate with workers and the government, to avoid a recurrence,” the company said without elaborating.

Eoin Treacy's view

The challenge of COVID is behind most governments internationally but ahead of the Chinese government. The success of domestic quarantine versus the acceptance of mass infections virtually everywhere else suggests China has to accept that it is impossible to avoid the spread of the virus eventually.

This question is the big challenge for the recovery in the commodity market. If China has to lockdown much of the country to try and curtail mass infection, that is going to hit domestic demand for just about everything. That will remain a globally disinflationary force.


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