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Wednesday, April 2, 2008

20,000 Vietnamese workers go on strike at Nike factory By VU TIEN HONG FROM The Houston Chronicle

More than 20,000 Vietnamese workers have walked off the job at a Taiwanese-owned plant that makes shoes for Nike Inc., demanding higher pay to keep pace with skyrocketing prices, officials said today.

The workers at Ching Luh plant, in southern Long An province, went on strike Monday. They want a 20 percent bump to their $59 average monthly salaries along with better lunches at the company cafeteria, said Nguyen Van Thua, an official with the province's trade union.

The plant has been making sneakers since 2002 and employs about 21,000 workers, most of them young rural women. The company is paying the workers 14 percent more than minimum wage, but soaring inflation is eroding their earnings, Thua said.

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