“Apple Inc and its key supplier Foxconn Technology Group will share the initial costs of improving labor conditions at the Chinese factories that assemble iPhones and iPads, Foxconn’s top executive said on Thursday,” John Ruwitch reports for Reuters.

“Foxconn chief Terry Gou did not give a figure for the costs, but the group has been spending heavily to fight a perception its vast plants in China are sweatshops with poor conditions for its million-strong labor force. It regards the criticism as unfair,” Ruwitch reports. “‘We’ve discovered that this (improving factory conditions) is not a cost. It is a competitive strength,’ Gou told reporters on Thursday after the ground-breaking ceremony for a new China headquarters in Shanghai. ‘I believe Apple sees this as a competitive strength along with us, and so we will split the initial costs.’”

Ruwitch reports, “It was unclear if the split would be 50/50 or in some other ratio. Foxconn announced in mid-February it had raised wages for workers by 16 to 25 percent, and in late March it reached an agreement with Apple to hire tens of thousands of new workers to reduce overtime work… Apple and Foxconn agreed earlier this year to improve conditions for workers assembling Apple products.”

Read more in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Readers "Fred Mertz" and "Jax44" for the heads up.]

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