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Samsung threatens to cut ties with supplier over child labour allegations

Vows to uphold 'zero tolerance' policy on underage workers

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Samsung has threatened to cut ties with a key supplier after the latter was accused of hiring children to work in its factory.

Last week, Child Labor Watch (CLW) claimed the Chinese firm Dongguan Shinyang Electronics employed underage workers during busy periods - and then paid them a pittance.

Now Samsung has announced it will temporarily suspend business with the supplier while it assesses the claims. If Dongguan Shinyang is found to have used child labour, Samsung will find a new supplier.

In a statement, Samsung said it had a "zero tolerance policy on child labor".

"It is unfortunate that the allegation surfaced despite Samsung’s efforts to prevent child labor at its suppliers," Samsung said. "As part of its pledge against child labor, Samsung routinely conducts inspections to monitor its suppliers in China to ensure they follow the commitment, and has provided necessary support."

Samsung has conducted three audits of Dongguan Shinyang since 2013 and said it had found no cases of child labour.

However, at the end of June, Samsung did find "evidences of illegal hiring process" and has informed the Chinese police.

It added: "If the investigations conclude that the supplier indeed hired children illegally, Samsung will permanently halt business with the supplier in accordance with its zero tolerance policy on child labor.

"Furthermore, Samsung will strengthen its hiring process not only at its production facilities but also at its suppliers to prevent such cases from reoccurring." ®

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