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25 Okt 2023

Min Ni Kyaw, Myanmar Labour News

Myanmar: New payment system at E&P Fashion means workers are paid less, workers report

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"E&P Fashion garment factory officials said that they will pay with a card system. Workers are having a hard time", 25 October 2023

The workers told Myanmar Labor News that E&P Fashion Garment factory officials said that when the factory reopens, the workers' wages will be paid through a single card system.

"The factory has been closed for 3 months. At that time, I [was] only paid 4,800 a day. Now the [factory is operating again], and they said that they will only pay with one card system," said one of the workers.

A worker explained that the payment of wages with a ticket system is a system of paying wages based on the number of garments completed.

If they pay like that, the wages of the workers will be less than the previous month, and they are worried because their living conditions will get worse.

The E&P Fashion garment factory opened for a few days in July and then closed for the next 15 days. The workers said they were told by [the supervisor] that they would only pay half their wages for those days off.

"At first I thought it would be 2 or 3 days. Then the factory was closed for 15 days. On the day the factory closed, the workers were called to a meeting and the factory said they would pay 4,800 wages on weekends. About 2 days later, [The supervisor] called me and asked if I could accept a weekend salary of 2,400 per garment. I told them that we would accept the fact that the factory would be closed for a day or two. It actually took 15 days for the factory to close. When we reopened, we told them that we could not accept the reduction in wages..." said one of the workers, clarifying the conditions of the factory.

The workers said that they filed a complaint with the labor office...

...the salary for July was...only 4,800 kyats.

"From that month to the next, there was no work for 9 months. Now, after 10 months and 20 days, the cloth orders have returned. "The factory told me that they would pay with a card system," a worker told Myanmar Labor News.

The workers said that since they said that they will pay with a card system after more than half a month, the wages they will receive for October will be low and they are worried about the difficulties.

"The women's dresses that are being sewn now have a very low sewing fee. I don't get anything...” A worker said.

The workers said that because the factory refused, some of the workers reduced their sewing work and staged a protest in the workplace...

It is believed that the E&P Fashion garment factory is willing to leave the workers without any negotiation.

"We think that the factory is doing it to get the workers to leave. Because last day, more than 30 workers left while working at the factory...The factory did not say anything...If the workers leave on their own, it's easier for the factory to [avoid[ compensat[ing] them." A worker said.

E&P Fashion garment factory is [based in] Hlaing Tharay Industrial Zone 5. It is near the Thangyi Police Station...

The factory is operated by around 500 workers and the workers said that they are sewing the sinsay brand.

[Translation via Google Translate]