Norwegian sovereign wealth fund places Hansae apparel maker "under observation" over concerns re labour rights abuses in factories
Author: Norges Bank Investment Management, Published on: 29 June 2017
Decision to place companies in the portfolio of the government pension fund global under observation
Norges Bank has decided to place Hansae Yes24 Holdings Co Ltd and Hansae Co Ltd under observation. The companies are placed under observation because of an unacceptable risk that the companies contribute to, or are responsible for, systematic violations of human rights... The Council on Ethics has recommended that Hansae Yes24 Holdings Co Ltd and Hansae Co Ltd be excluded from the fund’s investment universe. At the same time, the Council on Ethics highlights that the companies have taken measures to improve the working conditions. The Executive Board believes that these measures provide sufficient grounds to observe the development in the future.
Recommendation by the Council on Ethics [full text of recommendation, which finds "Numerous violations of statutory health and safety provisions...at Hansae Vietnam, including overwork leading to workers fainting at their sewing machines, restrictions on employees use of toilet facilities, as well as harassment, deficient fire safety precautions, forced overtime, illegal restrictions on sick leave, unfair dismissal, discrimination and a lack of freedom of association." Also refers to Costec (part of Hansae).]