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From The Socialist newspaper, 13 June 2012

Olympic's sponsor exploits workers

Multinational sportswear corporation and Olympics sponsor Adidas owes its workers in Indonesia, who it paid as little as 45 pence an hour, $1.8 million (1.2 million) in unpaid wages.

In January 2011 the owner of the PT Kizone factory, which made Adidas products, fled. This resulted in the factory being closed and the 2,800-strong workforce, mostly women with dependent children, laid-off without being paid a penny.

Adidas, which has handsomely profited from these workers' labour - 559 million profit in 2011 - claims it is not liable for the unpaid wages and compensation.

Many of these low-paid workers have since lost their homes and are facing massive debts. Meanwhile, Adidas is spending hundreds of millions of dollars on sponsoring events such as the London 2012 Olympics and the Euro 2012 football championships in order to promote its profitable brand.

Sacked PT Kizone workers have been demonstrating outside the German and British embassies in Jakarta, Indonesia. They are demanding that Adidas respect their rights and pay them the money they are owed.

Meanwhile protesters from social justice campaign groups have staged demonstrations outside Adidas stores in cities across Britain, Denmark, Spain and Austria in solidarity with the Indonesian workers.

Adidas's behaviour is one of many examples of the parasitic and exploitative nature of the capitalist mode of production in the pursuit of profit.

Dave Younger

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In The Socialist 13 June 2012:


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