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Behind iPhone: an army of female workers earning $4 a day at Foxconn's Indian factory

via:猎云网     time:2019/9/2 17:22:11     readed:218

It's Foxconn's in the city of Smiles.cellphoneThe scene of shift change in the factory. Thousands of young women poured out, replaced by another group of women. One of them is the slender 21-year-old Jennifer Jayadas, who lives miles away in a two-bedroom without running water.

After gobbling up a free curry pancake breakfast, she put on a plaid white hat, apron shirt, antistatic shoes and little finger gloves, and then arrived at her station at the test station. She works here for eight hours and is responsible for making sure the volume, vibration and other talking functions work properly. "smartphones used to be basically made in China, but now they are India," she said.

Four years ago, Foxconn (also known as Hon Hai Technology Group) opened its first Indian factory. Foxconn currently operates two assembly plants in India and plans to expand and add two more. India has become an important manufacturing base because the Taipei-based company wants to diversify its business beyond mainland China.

Josh Fou, head of Foxconn's India operations"Not all of them," says Er.(hen's) egg It's a business gold rule in the same basket, and we have to find a viable and reliable alternative. Clearly, the location of alternatives must be competitive. We can't set the phone manufacturing facility in Mexico, maybe it's a 10-year-old, but it's not going to work for 10 years. "

Foulger, 48, grew up in Chennai, graduated from the University of Texas at Arlington, and founded a manufacturing plant for Nokia before returning to India. Four years ago, he joined Foxconn to help founder Terry Gou set up an assembly plant in India, the world's fastest growing smartphone market.

In 2015, Foxconn opened its first Indian factory in Sri City. Sri City is a special economic zone where goods can be imported and exported with limited access, while allowing foreign companies to produce everything from diapers to train carriages. Foxconn employs about 15,000 workers, about 90% of whom are women, and is a local best seller.milletManufacturers, including mobile phones, assemble products. In recent months, workers have begun testing and assembling.AppleOfIPhoneX. It is reported that the iPhone X will first be sold in India and then exported to other countries.

In 2017, the second smartphone factory was set up in the riperumbudur industrial park, about two hours'drive from the first factory. The second plant employs 12,000 employees and employs some automation technology. "By 2023, both factories will be expanded and two more will be added," Foulger said.

At present, some parts of Foxconn are still manufactured in China, but it is expected to produce displays and printed circuit boards locally in India in the future. Foulger is making unremitting efforts to reach one-third of India's domestic smartphone market and 10% of the global smartphone market (currently 2.5% of the global market). So he plans to add other product lines, such as Amazon Echo speakers. "So far, Indian manufacturing has mainly served the Indian market, but soon Indian manufacturing will go global," he said.

The burly, bearded Indian executive sits in his office overlooking the busyness of the Sriperumbudur factory and points out India's advantages: only half of China's labor costs; a large workforce, including talented engineers; and a government in urgent need.

They have a "deal" with Prime Minister Narendra Modi: the Indian government is under pressure to reduce unemployment, which now exceeds 6 percent. The Indian government's four-year-old "made in India" policy aims to transform India into a manufacturing power by encouraging foreign companies to open factories there. "this policy plans to expand India's $25 billion mobile phone manufacturing market to $400 billion by 2024, a large part of which will come from the export market," said Pankaj Mahindroo, president of the Indian Communications and Electronics Association.

But there is a long way to go to achieve this goal: according to the association, only 700,000 electronic manufacturing jobs have been created after the implementation of Made in India. Technical workers such as industrial designers are in short supply, and there is a lack of suppliers of key components such as batteries, semiconductors and processors. Anshul Gupta, senior research director at Gartner India, said: "India's climate is not enough, but it's becoming a system. India can increase its manufacturing power.

Foxconn is an integral part of China's transformation into a manufacturing giant, and Gou tells Moody that Foxconn can help India do so. But it took China 30 years to achieve that goal. Andrew Polk, founding partner of Trivium China, a Beijing research firm, said: "China's advantage lies in its huge labor resources, which make cost production quite low. They invest heavily in logistics and transportation on this basis. Even if their advantage in labor resources disappears, they have invested in processes and systems, so they can still produce efficiently on a large scale and market their products.

Catching up with China requires the Indian government and private sector to invest heavily in roads, railways, ports and other infrastructure. "When China did this, the global supply chain was fragmented, but there was only one in China," Polk said. India must not only make the right decisions, but also surpass China in a better way. The advantage of China's development also benefits from not having to worry too much about the environmental impact. "With growing concerns about climate change, development cannot be achieved overnight," he said.

As a senior supply chain worker in India and elsewhere for 20 years, Foulger is painfully aware of these challenges. He said, "I can dish my beard and say,'India can copy China', but the reality is that we have drawbacks. The state government provides land, water and power connections for factories in Sriperumbudur Industrial Park, Foxconn,DELLFirms such as Flextronics have joined forces to build their own industrial parks. Even so, because of the severe water shortage in Chennai and nearby areas, Foulger still needs to solve the water problem for thousands of workers.

Foulger decided early on to hire a large number of female workers. Female workers are common in China, but rare in India, where rural women usually do housework or farm work for free. Four years ago, local governments and courts intervened, before which women in the region were not even allowed to work in factories.

The idea came from Foulger's mother, who persuaded him to give women a chance. Foulger's mother is a teacher and most of her students have poor backgrounds. She says women are curious, hard-working and tough, but family conditions deprive them of College opportunities. Many people are forced to work early or to marry and raise their children when they are young.

Foulger said that because most Indian manufacturers prefer to recruit men, it is easy to get recruits. But he had to make some adjustments. For example,Air conditionerIt has to be raised to 26 degrees, because women workers have never used air conditioning. Foulger was initially hesitant when a manager asked about hygiene. He was curious about what people would think of women when they entered the job. Nevertheless, he was advised to install a towel distributor in the bathroom. Foulger also had to pay extra security costs for women workers and provide transport and accommodation for workers farther away from home. But he thinks these extra expenses are well worth it because "women work hard and are grateful for the job opportunities they get."

For years, Foxconn has been widely criticized for its hard working conditions in Chinese factories. At the beginning of this century, a series of suicides by young migrant workers shocked the whole world, prompting companies to set up help hotlines, increase salaries and install safety nets to prevent jumping. In August, Foxconn fired two executives from a Chinese factory, which mainly assembles equipment for Amazon, after an ILO said it cut wages and flouted the law to deal with rising U.S. tariffs.

Foxconn's two factories in India show no signs of sweatshops. But most workers complain about the tedious work. From the moment they enter the workshop to the end of the eight-hour shift, the work repeats relentlessly. They must achieve their daily production goals at all costs. The women assembled each cell phone in rows to check for obvious defects. Shivparvati Kallivettu, 24, tests the phone's audio, checks batteries and SIM card trays every day. She explained that her main break was to have breakfast with four good friends in the factory canteen every morning.

Most women who work in factories have clear goals, such as sending their children to better schools or paying off family debts. Wages have lifted them out of the poverty line. Jayadas earns about 9,000 rupees a month ($130, about a third of the average wage in Chinese factories), and can ride the company bus and eat two nutritious meals a day for free. To avoid tedious work, the company has taught at least 10 skills in the testing, packaging and assembly parts of the production line so that they can take turns in different jobs. Nevertheless, many workers regard the job as a temporary measure. Recently, 400 women workers were absent from their daily shifts. Managers found that they all took the government's teacher recruitment exam, which paid only one third of Foxconn's salary, but offered seemingly unrealistic compensation.

After work, Jayadas gets on the bus and gets home by 4 p.m. After she helped prepare the meal, she fetched 12 buckets of water from the street tap to meet the daily needs of the family. Her father repaired the radio and DVD player. Her income was meager and unstable. All her wages were paid to her parents. Jayadas pointed to the fragile roof and dilapidated walls and said, "First the house has to be repaired, and then I want to save money to do it."Cosmetology"

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