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UK investigates after labour rights expose at world's top glove maker

Ersin Çelik
16:45 - 9/12/2018 Sunday
Update: 16:47 - 9/12/2018 Sunday
REUTERS
File photo
File photo

GOVERNMENT CONCERNS

Malaysian labour activists over the weekend demanded action from their government into the findings and urged Top Glove to commit to further investigate their working conditions.

A spokesman for the British High Commission in Kuala Lumpur - Malaysia's capital - said it had been made aware of concerns about Top Glove's treatment of migrant workers and was "raising our concerns to the Malaysian Ministry of Human Resources."

Pauline Gothberg, national coordinator of the Swedish County Council Network on Sustainable Public Procurement, said her office planned to audit several government suppliers of rubber gloves which had confirmed they sourced from Malaysia

Malaysia's Human Resources Minister M. Kulasegaran told the Thomson Reuters Foundation last week that major companies in the country must take the lead to ensure there are no labour abuses.

Several Top Glove workers said they worked a lot of overtime to pay off debts to recruitment agents in their home countries.

Some clocked 90 - 120 hours of overtime a month, according to documents seen by the Thomson Reuters Foundation, above the 104 hour overtime limit stipulated by Malaysia's labour laws.

One worker said he had borrowed $1,100 (864 pounds) from a moneylender with a 3 percent monthly interest rate to pay back an agent in Nepal who got him a job at Top Glove in Malaysia.

"If I don't work these extra hours, how could I possibly earn enough?" he said, requesting anonymity to protect his job.

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