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Wal-Mart Faces Growing Labor Unrest In China

April 23, 2013: 12:00 AM EST
Wal-Mart is faced with increasing employee activism demanding for workplace rights and an end to what workers claim are unfair labor practices in China. After opening its first store in the country in 1996, Wal-Mart now has 400 stores in 147 cities across China. Sales in China account for only 2 percent of Wal-Mart's global revenue; company executives, however, believe that the country is key to the company's future growth. Labor leaders have found that although the "Wal-Mart culture" encourages employee empowerment, along with it comes allegations of abuses that follow the retailer from the United States and almost all other parts of the world the company is operating. Former employee Wang Shishu, who was dismissed after he joined protests against the retailer's labor practices, symbolizes the growing employee opposition to Wal-Mart's alleged violations of labor laws.
Esther Wang, "As Wal-Mart Swallows China's Economy, Workers Fight Back", The American Prospect, April 23, 2013, © The American Prospect
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