Malcolm Moore, the Telegraph’s Shanghai correspondent, suggests that Foxconn has painted itself into a tragic corner with its policy of paying large settlements to the families of suicides:
For a worker on the basic rate of 900 yuan a month, the compensation amounts to the equivalent of over ten years of gross salary. For a worker who is doing overtime and earning 1500 yuan a month, the compensation is still worth six years of salary.
If these enormous payments don’t stop, the suicides are unlikely to either. But if Foxconn takes the pragmatic option, there is every chance that its workers, fanned by the media, will revolt at its callousness. I would not want to be in Mr Gou’s shoes.