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Thousands of Companies Forced to Pay Back Wages
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Labor officials in the city forced companies to pay 280 million yuan (US$36.98 million) in delayed wage, social insurance fees and illegal deposits from employees from January to June, the Shanghai Labor and Social Security Bureau said yesterday.

The bureau received more than 10,000 complaints about delayed wages or other fees during the period and inspected more than 20,000 companies around the city. They found 6,987 violations of the law involving about 370,000 workers in total.

The bureau wouldn't provide comparison figures from previous years.

About 39 percent of complaints investigated involved social insurance fees, while delayed wages accounted for 26 percent and unpaid overtime was the focus of 19 percent of grievances.

About 150 million yuan in delayed payments were cleared up during the six-month period.

"The number of cases of deliberately delaying wages dropped during the first half of the year," said bureau official Zhang Yuan, without providing detailed numbers.

"Most of the delayed payments were for extra work or overtime working, and the delays were only one or two months, rather than as long as a year," Zhang said.

The bureau said most of the companies found violating the law were private firms based in the city's suburbs. It wouldn't say how many fines were handed out.

(Shanghai Daily July 23, 2007)

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