Workers attend to parts of electronic devices at a Foxconn factory. [File photo]
Foxconn has released a statement clarifying comments made by its chairman Terry Gou in which he referred to the company's workers as "one million animals."The statement emphasized that Mr Gou's comments referred to management issues rather than the workers themselves.
"Hon Hai has a workforce of over one million worldwide and as human beings are also animals, to manage one million animals gives me a headache,"Gou said Sunday in conversation with the director of Taipei Zoo, Chin Shih-chien.
Hon Hai is the parent company of Foxconn, which makes electronics for companies such as Apple and HP.
"Mr. Gou did say that, since all humans are members of the animal kingdom, it might be possible to learn from Mr. Chin's experience as his team looks for lessons that can be applied to business,"Foxconn said in the statement. "Mr. Gou's comments were directed at all humans and not at any specific group."
Foxconn's overall headache is much more painful than this one episode, however. The world's largest world contract manufacturer has been labeled as a sweatshop after a spate of staff suicides over the past two years.
China's business press carried the story above on Saturday.
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