ASIA/MYANMAR - Child labor: cheap labor that fuels growth in the Country

Thursday, 23 March 2017

Alexander Montuschi

Naypyidaw (Agenzia Fides) - In Myanmar minors can legally start working at 14 years of age, but the workday cannot exceed four hours. Legislation allows children to enter the labor market at age 14, but some also falsify their documents to start earlier. Despite the fact that all forms of dangerous jobs are prohibited, experts argue that the legislation is poorly understood, and many children, even very young, are sent to work. According to information sent to Fides, one child, between 10 and 17 years of age, out of 5 works in Myanmar: one of the worst Countries in the world in the field of child labor, where one in four people live below the poverty line.
Many of the children who work to help their families sell flowers, serve tea or do household jobs. Others work in the growing number of foreign factories established in the Country to transform the economy into the most dynamic in the region. Western companies take advantage of low labor costs. The minimum wage is in fact about 33 cents an hour, less than Thailand, Cambodia, China and Indonesia. (AP) (Agenzia Fides 23/03/2017)