TAIPEI, Nov 24 (Reuters) – Apple’s main supplier Foxconn (2317.TW) said on Thursday a “technical error” occurred when hiring new hires at an iPhone factory affected by COVID in China and apologized to workers after the company was rocked by further social unrest.
Men smashed surveillance cameras and windows as hundreds of workers protested at the factory in Zhengzhou city on Wednesday, in rare scenes of open dissent in China sparked by allegations of late payment and frustration over severe restrictions related to COVID-19.
The workers said on videos posted on social media that they had been informed that Foxconn intended to delay the payment of bonuses. Some workers have also complained of being forced to share dormitories with colleagues who have tested positive for COVID.
“Our team has investigated the issue and discovered that a technical error occurred during the onboarding process,” Foxconn said in a statement.
“We apologize for an input error in the computer system and guarantee that the actual salary is the same as that agreed and the official recruitment posters.”
The larger protests had died down on Thursday and the company was communicating with employees engaged in smaller protests, a Foxconn source familiar with the matter told Reuters.
The Taiwanese company said it would try to solve the problems and meet the workers’ demands, with “matching care grants” offered to those who wish to return to their hometowns.
The Zhengzhou factory employs more than 200,000 people to make Apple Inc (AAPL.O) devices, including the iPhone 14 Pro and Pro Max.
The person said the company had reached “initial agreements” with employees to resolve the dispute and production at the plant continued on Thursday.
Reporting by Yimou Lee; Editing by Sandra Maler and Stephen Coates
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