Archive for the ‘employees’ Category

Some Say Let GM Fail; Others Want Bailout

November 13, 2008

Momentum is building in Washington for a rescue package for the auto industry to head off a possible bankruptcy filing by General Motors, which is rapidly running low on cash.

By Micheline Maynard
The New york Times

But not everyone agrees that a Chapter 11 filing by G.M. would be the disaster that many fear. Some experts note that while bankruptcy would be painful, it may be preferable to a government bailout that may only delay, at considerable cost, the wrenching but necessary steps G.M. needs to take to become a stronger, leaner company.

GM logo

Although G.M.’s labor contracts would be at risk of termination in a bankruptcy, setting up a potential confrontation with its unions, the company says its pension obligations are largely financed for its 479,000 retirees and their spouses.

Shareholders have already lost much of the equity that would disappear in a bankruptcy case. Shares of G.M. rose 16 cents Wednesday, to $3.08, but they have fallen 90.5 percent over the last 12 months, amid sharply lower auto sales and fears about G.M.’s future.

And as companies in industries like airlines, steel and retailing have shown, bankruptcy can offer a fresh start with a more competitive cost structure to preserve a future for the workers who remain.

Read the rest:
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/13/business/economy/
13bankruptcy.html?_r=1&hp=&adxnnl=1&oref=slogin&adxnnlx=122
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Migrants are China’s ‘factories without smoke’

February 2, 2008
By Alexandra Harney
For CNN
February 2, 2008

Editor’s note: Alexandra Harney is a Hong Kong-based writer and the author of the forthcoming book “The China Price: The True Cost of Chinese Competitive Advantage” (Penguin Press, 2008).

HONG KONG, China (CNN) — In the crowds still stranded by snow at train stations around China stand some of the country’s most valuable economic assets: migrant workers.

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A migrant worker, right, joins a queue waiting to board trains this past week in Shanghai, China.

This group of 150 million to 200 million farmers — more than the population of the United Kingdom, France and Australia combined — account for the majority of employees in China’s world-beating manufacturing sector, the bulk of its coal miners and most of its construction workers.

During the past two decades, according to a conservative estimate from UNESCO and the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, migrants have contributed 16 percent of gross domestic product growth.

Read the rest:
http://www.cnn.com/2008/WORLD/asiapcf/02/01/china.migrants/index.html?section=cnn_latest