Apple Supplier Wistron 'Working Hard' to Raise Standards at Violence-Hit India Factory [Updated]

Apple supplier Wistron said it plans to restart operations at its iPhone manufacturing facility in India, where workers caused widespread damage late last year over claims of unpaid wages.

iphone 6s india wistron
In a statement given to Reuters, the Taiwanese company said it was working hard to raise standards and fix issues at the plant in Karnataka's Kolar district.

"We are looking forward to restarting our operations and welcoming back team members and we thank them for their patience and support as we worked through corrective actions,” Wistron said.

In December 2020, disgruntled staff went on a rampage at the plant, upturning cars and destroying equipment and furniture.

Wistron initially claimed that the incident was caused by people of unknown identities from outside who intruded into and damaged its facility with unclear intentions.

However, local media reported that many of the 2,000 employees were involved in the violence, with many claiming that they had not been fully paid for four months and were being forced to do extra shifts.

Following the unrest, Apple placed Wistron on probation while it conducted an audit, which found that the plant showed violations of its "Supplier Code of Conduct."

According to Apple, Wistron had failed to implement proper working hour management processes, which "led to payment delays for some workers in October and November."

The plant was set to hire up to 20,000 more workers to manufacture more iPhone SE devices, but the plan was put on ice and Apple said it would not award Wistron any new business until it addressed how its workers are treated.

The Apple probation has delayed the tech company's manufacturing push into India, where it has pledged to invest $1 billion dollars as it seeks to diversify its global supply chains.

Update: Regarding the restarting of operations at the Wistron plant, Apple has released the following statement (via Reuters):

"For the past eight weeks, teams across Apple, along with independent auditors, have been working with Wistron to make sure the necessary systems and processes are in place at their Narasapura facility," Apple said in a statement.

"Wistron remains on probation and we will monitor their progress closely."

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Tags: India, Wistron

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Top Rated Comments

gnasher729 Avatar
44 months ago
So someone decided not to pay workers, either out of greed or out of incompetence, or likely incompetence caused by greed. No wonder people get upset when that happens.

We don’t know if Wistron paid its subcontractor for the work these employees did or not, but they are not going to get more work until they have sorted this out. Worker rights in India are quite bad, so they are lucky that they have a customer who cares a little bit more.

And Wistron first blaming some nefarious outsiders without having checked what happened was not a good move for them.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
gnasher729 Avatar
44 months ago

Apple still going to do business with this factory?

Well, maybe if Apple didn't demand razor thin profit contracts they might have had a little bit more cashflow to pay their employees.
If you read the article, Wistron has a chance to fix the problem and will lose their contract with Apple if they don't. For the whole of Wistron. For Wistron, it's not about that factory, it's about their _whole_ business with Apple. And it's also quite clear that the problem wasn't not enough money, it was someone "losing" the paperwork to pay their employees. We don't even know if the money is still in some company's bank account or has moved into someone's pocket, which isn't unheard of in India.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
seinman Avatar
44 months ago
You love to see it. Direct action brings results. Too bad Americans are too *********** to do the same when they strike.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
tongxinshe Avatar
44 months ago
It’s not as easy to exploit Indian workers as they did to Chinese workers. Other countries should follow suite with what the Indian workers do.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
koruki Avatar
44 months ago

They need to ditch China. So they must put up with India to manufacture phones elsewhere.
They NEED to? why not do it in Taiwan then? Not enough cheap labor? moving it to India fixes nothing, same pile of s*&^ different name
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
profcutter Avatar
44 months ago

You love to see it. Direct action brings results. Too bad Americans are too *********** to do the same when they strike.
Came here to say the same thing. It’s the only thing the bosses understand.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)