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Samsung child labour accusations prompt Dongguan Shinyang ban

Samsung has suspended one of its Chinese suppliers for child labour violations.
A student looks at Samsung mobile phones in a store in Seoul. Far from buying the company's products, a U.S. labour watchdog recently discovered children working in factories that make Samsung products. (Han Jae-Ho/Reuters)

Samsung has suspended one of its Chinese suppliers for child labour violations.

The Korean manufacturing conglomerate has slapped a ban on Dongguan Shinyang Electronics Co. after the latter was found to be employing children to manufacture components for electronic mobile devices.

The move comes after an American lobby group, China Labor Watch, found at least five documented violations of children under the age of 16 working in the supplier's Chinese factories.

The watchdog said the children were hired for temporary contracts during periods of high demand, for a period of between three and six months last year. The watchdog said the child workers were paid for 10 hours a day but often worked 11 hours a day or more.

In addition to the child labour violations, other violations including the absence of safety training, no overtime wages and no social insurance for almost 40 per cent of employees were discovered.

"Following the investigation, Samsung decided to temporarily suspend business with the factory in question as it found evidences of suspected child labour at the work site," Samsung said in a statement Monday. "The decision was made in accordance with Samsung's zero tolerance policy on child labour."

"If the investigations conclude that the supplier indeed hired children illegally, Samsung will permanently halt business with the supplier in accordance with its zero-tolerance policy on child labour."

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