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South African court rules in favour of small apparel units
Mar '13
The High Court in Pietermaritzburg has ruled that small apparel manufacturing units, owned by families of Chinese and Taiwanese descent in Newcastle, in South Africa’s eastern KwaZulu-Natal province, are exempt from National Bargaining Council (NBC) agreements on wages.
The judgement came in response to an application filed by a group of five Taiwanese-owned garment companies and the United Clothing and Textile Association for setting aside the minimum wages set by the NBC, which are implemented across the country’s textile and garment industry.
In his written ruling, Judge Piet Koen said the NBC represents less than half of the employees in the apparel industry and the clothing units that are not members of the council can hold separate discussions with their workers on wage structures.
The high court decision could have far-reaching consequences for the South African clothing industry, as it would make it easier for small garment units to employ workers at wages less than those prescribed by the NBC.

Fibre2fashion News Desk - India

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