China: while businesses fight over Coca-Cola expansion, workers raise their voice over outsourcing

Sept. 16, 2008. While the Olympic Games were a huge success for one of its main sponsors, Coca-Cola, the company is facing difficulties at some other China issues.

Domestic businesses reacted harshly to the companies plans to acquire Chinas biggest juice-producing company, Huiyan, for about 3,2bln USD - the deal would constitute the largest mainland acquisition made by the U.S. company.
As a consequence of the intensive lobbying of its competitors on the growing Chines market, the Ministry of Commerce has announced the proposed takeover would be reviewed under the antimonopoly law that came into effect last month.
(see for example a report on "China Knowledge").
While businesses are fighting to get their share of the greatly expanding Chinese juice market and Coca-Cola seeks to pursue its strategy to develop its non-carbonated drinks business in China as well, Coca-Cola workers in Shenzen are fighting against outsourcing of their jobs. It is remarkable that the article points out the negative role of the official union that exists at their plant. This casts a damning light on Coca-Cola Social responsibility report for China, where the company praised itself for having unions at all of its operations. Once more it becomes obvious that official, state or management controlled unions cannot replace real independent worker representation.

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