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16 Feb, 2012

Federal Migration Service Found Illegal Foreign Workers at LG Plant in Russia

By Vitaly Vitvitsky | Category: Labour Market

Officers of Russian Federal Migration Service (FMS) visited LG Electronics plant near Moscow. The audit found 178 illegal workers employed at this LG plant, Russian news agency RIA Novosti reported yesterday.

According to the news agency, these foreign workers are citizens of Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Ukraine, Moldova and Korea. They do not only work as loaders and cleaners, but are also engaged in the assembly of LG Electronics home appliances and office equipment.

In total 640 foreign nationals have been found at the plant. Just next to the factory of LG Electronics, on the territory of a market, the place where migrant workers lived was discovered. 30 foreigners were found there.

Personally I was impressed by the report “Conveyor of illegals”, shown on Russia TV channel. According to the migrant labourers themselves, their salary is only $100 per month.

As it is written on its site, LG Electronics is a large international company located in 81 countries and employing 82,000 people.

But as I wrote in my article “Is it Good to Work For International Companies?” (I’m going to translate it into English soon), the work in a well-known international company is actually not a panacea for possible troubles. The incident with LG Electronics is actually one more confirmation of that. And it’s not just the fact of the use of illegal labour, although it is very important. After all, if the employer violates the law in one thing, he can do the same in another. So it can hurt not only the guest-workers (traditionally suppressed), but also Russian citizens working at the plant.

Well, there is another fact that surprised me, too. I mean the fact that low-skilled labour migrants work at the LG Electronics production line. Is it worth to trust the LG brand, and is the quality of products assembled in Russia guaranteed? Well, this question remains up in the air. The web site of LG Electronics contains no information regarding this incident, although this is the case when the management and press office are supposed to respond immediately.

And one more point. Related to the fact that the company recruits labour migrants from Central Asia or not, but there is no single vacancy in Russia on the LG Electronics site. Well, maybe now, after the deportation of illegal workers, these jobs will appear. Otherwise we will not see the civilized labor market for a long time.

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