China Probes Student Pay – Gordon Fairclough

From The Wall Street Journal:

Authorities in the southern Chinese city of Guangzhou say they soon will conclude an investigation into employee-pay practices at Yum Brands Inc. and McDonald’s Corp., in a case that highlights the ambiguities of China’s thicket of overlapping and sometimes confusing labor regulations.

The issue in Guangzhou, one of China’s biggest cities, also illustrates the challenges for big multinationals in China created by an increasingly aggressive local media. Officials in the city began reviewing the treatment of workers at McDonald’s and Yum’s KFC and Pizza Hut outlets last week, after a local newspaper, which placed reporters undercover in the restaurants, said student employees were being paid less than the city’s newly mandated minimum hourly wage.

However, under China’s national , aren’t covered by minimum-wage requirements and other rules, as they aren’t considered part of the formal work force and — in theory — get social security and insurance benefits through their schools and universities.[Full Text]

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