MakeITfair’s report “Out of focus” on digital camera companies in Vietnam reveals that the major issue faced by workers is the lack of freedom of association and collective bargaining power. Although the Vietnamese labour law only permits one legal trade union, without taking proactive steps, the electronics companies in Vietnam risk wildcat strikes.
The report shows that camera companies producing for the European market in Vietnam could do much more to ensure that their products are responsibly produced. Instead of passively relying on the existing restrictive labour laws, electronics companies could use their leverage as important foreign investors to push the Vietnamese government to ensure better industrial relations. They can also act more responsibly within the law by adopting some of the best practices described in this report to improve social dialogue and grievance mechanisms and by putting proper due diligence processes in place.
In the report, makeITfair reviewed the CSR polices of seven digital camera companies and researched the working conditions at Sanyo, Olympus, Samsung, and Pentax.