Virus outbreak causes layoffs at Chinese-owned factory in Yangon

A Chinese-owned garment factory in Hlaing Tharyar township in Yangon Region has temporarily shut down and laid off hundreds of workers due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

The Hunter Myanmar Garment Factory shut down on Saturday, allegedly due to financial difficulties caused by cancelled orders and lack of raw materials.

Ma Thandar Win, leader of the labour union at the plant, said the Chinese owner told Yangon Chief Minister U Phyo Min Thein she could not access money because the banks are closed due to the virus outbreak.

“U Phyo Min Thein said he did not know when the epidemic will end and the banks will reopen,” she said. “It is cold there and is the flu season. When spring comes in April, the problems might end, but there is no guarantee.”

Ma Thandar Win said the union and management will meet on Monday at the Labour Department office in Hlaing Tharyar to discuss compensation for the nearly 1000 workers.

The workers want a guarantee that they will be reinstated when the factory reopens.

“The factory is just 13 months old and has had problems,” she said. Under the law, workers must be employed for at least six months before they are entitled to 15 days’ compensation. Many workers are not eligible yet.”

She said some workers only need a few days before they reach one year of employment, which would qualify them for one-month’s compensation. “They could lose around K130,000,” she added. – Translated

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Source : Myanmar Times

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