China : Wages . Piece Rates in Denim Industry

China is the largest producer of the denim jeans in the world . Not only is it the largest producer, but also the largest consumer of denim jeans. One of the reasons for this has been the low costs of production in China. However, over the last few years, it is felt that a large part of this advantage has been eroded as the costs of production , especially the labour costs have risen in China. While this is certainly true that the labor costs have risen in China, they need to be understood in more depth , specially in the context of denim jeans industry to understand closely how the Chinese factories work and how the labor gets wages. In this report we will try to analyse  the wage perspective of denim jeans industry alongwith a reference to minimum wages and other laws of the Chinese govt. related to the apparel industry . We will see how wages are actually given in some of the jeans factories and washing plants including their system of providing over time payments, piece rates etc. We shall cover 2 large denim jeans companies , 2 washing plants where dry and wet processing is done. Thus, this report includes :

  • Detailed analysis of Chinese wage and over time standards.Minimum wages are stipulated by different provinces separately and some provinces like Guangdong have higher min. standards.
  • Details of the 4 companies under purview.
  • Analysis of actual wages / overtime/ piece rates being paid to workers for some important brands by these companies. Also how these rates can differ for different departments within the company.
  • Normally what are the working hours of a jeans manufacturing/ washing plant.
  • How a worker’s salary is calculated.
  • An idea on the efficiency of Chinese workers related to denim production.
  • Referential context to piece rates for processing and other deptts.

Chinese law states that a standard work week consists of
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