China to Investigate Deplorable Conditions at Amazon Echo Factory

Officials in Beijing said working conditions at a Chinese factory that makes Echo Dot smart speakers and Kindle e-readers for Amazon will be investigated after a prominent human-rights watchdog reported that its workforce was being paid extremely low wages and working excessive hours. Contract manufacturer Foxconn said Sunday that conditions at Hengyang plant in Hunan province would be probed after the publication of a damning 94-page report by New York-based China Labor Watch. “We are carrying out a full investigation of the areas raised by that report, and if found to be true, immediate actions will be taken to bring the operations into compliance with our Code of Conduct,” Foxconn Technology Group wrote in a statement to Reuters. The investigation also found about 40 percent of workers at the plant were dispatch workers, far exceeding the 10 percent limit under Chinese law. “They were underpaid,” said China Labor Watch Program Officer Elaine Lu. “That’s illegal.”