Foxconn responded to the negative publicity by raising wages, which inspired a number of articles. However, few of these articles noted that the raises were vapor. Why? Because, as Eastday chronicles, Foxconn wisely instituted a three month probation and review period for its Shenzhen workers. In other words, assuming anyone actually gets a raise, it will be months from now. "You didn't pass the review" is likely to be the new mantra over at Foxconn's HR unit for the next year or so.
In fact, while the local press has trumpeted Foxconn's announcement to move his factories back to Taiwan, this article at Taiwan Today claims Gou was working on that for the last months. All the Foxconn talk is just theatre. China attacks Foxconn with theatre, Foxconn replies with theatre. Not for nothing does "PRC" begin with "PR"....
That same article also says that wages for foreign workers in Taiwan are going to be lowered by adminstrative sleight of hand, which will help local firms return here and attract outside investment, which will mean greater demand for the taxis local workers are now all driving. Isn't that great?
Businessweek chronicled how rising wages, starting with the reforms of 2008 that note only pushed up wages but also ended certain export breaks, are putting pressure on Taiwan firms in China:
Another article noted that the Minister of Economics in Taiwan promised to put in place a set of policies to help Taiwan firms move south. The southward call was highly ironic, since diversification of investment to Vietnam and elsewhere was a staple of DPP policy (please, will somebody start looking at India?). Arthur Chao further said:
Recent wage hikes in China could force Taiwanese electronics firms operating there to relocate to other Asian countries, a Taiwanese industry leader has said.
Chairman Arthur Chiao of the Taiwan Electronics and Electrical Appliances Association said his group is assisting China-based Taiwanese companies to seek out new manufacturing sites in India, Indonesia and Vietnam in the wake of steadily rising labor costs on the mainland.
However, companies whose main markets are in the United States and Europe should consider relocating as soon as possible to places with better potential for development and profit making, Chiao said.Meanwhile exports hit the largest percentage rise ever to reach the fifth highest monthly total ever. Looks like Taiwan's economy is on the rebound.
And back in China? The strikes at several foreign owned firms have apparently triggered other strikes, many at foreign owned factories, at least according to Epoch Times. Spreading strikes.... Looks like China has attempted to call up the demon of mass action and may now have great trouble getting it stuffed back into the bottle again.
- Taiwan mountain biking video at Taiwan in Cycles.
- Police officer uses geomancy in police work.
- In response to the gangster killed in front of policeman in Taichung, Ma calls for stepped up police work and stuff. Because this approach worked so many times before. The government even plans to crack down on gangsters for a whole three months.
- MUST READ: John Pomfret's excellent piece in WaPo on the outburst of a PRC Admiral at the US for
frustrating China's aggression and imperialismthreatening its core interests. It really strikes to the heart of the kind of self-deception the panda huggers are engaging in.
[Taiwan] Don't miss the comments below! And check out my blog and its sidebars for events, links to previous posts and picture posts, and scores of links to other Taiwan blogs and forums!