Posted June 7, 2014 1:33 pm by Comments

Ho Chi Minh City has approved the application by South Korea’s Samsung Group to construct a US$1 billion electronics manufacturing facility at the city’s Hi-Tech Park. The facility will produce LCD screens and related parts plus a research and development center.

Back in 2009, Samsung inaugurated its mobile phone production plant Samsung Electronics VN in the northern province of Bac Ninh. The plant had an initial investment of $670 million, which eventually increased to $2.5 billion.

In March 2013, the $2 billion Samsung Electronics VN Thai Nguyen complex broke ground in Thai Nguyen, another northern province.

Around 43,000 employees are working at the Bac Ninh facility while the Thai Nguyen complex is expected to attract up to 50,000 workers. It is also estimated that Samsung’s two plants in Vietnam will produce $35 billion worth of mobile phones this year.

However and back in January, a riot broke out at the construction site in Thai Nguyen Province amid conflicting reports as to the reasons why:

The report said some workers showed up late for work and insisted on entering the site, but the guards stopped them in accordance with regulations, provoking a quarrel between the two sides.

The quarrel then led to an all-out melee with thousands of workers attacked and threw rocks at the guards as they thought that the guards had beaten their colleague(s) to death.

As the guards ran to hide, 11 of them hid in three containers, which were being used as guardrooms, but the workers surrounded them and threw rocks at them.

The workers burned down the containers and 22 motorbikes belonging to the guards.

Police saved the 11 injured guards and took them out of the containers at around 9 a.m. They were able to suppress the fight after 10 a.m., according to the report.

And:

… witnesses told Thanh Nien that the problem began when a construction worker was stopped by a group of guards from bringing his meal into the site.

The guards then stomped on his meal and threatened to assault him.

Another worker intervened, and he too had a quarrel with the guards. They reportedly beat the worker with a club, causing the former to lose consciousness.

Enraged, many other workers attacked the guards with rocks and sticks, burning down the containers and motorbikes.

When hundreds of police officers arrived to suppress the fight, the workers threw rocks at them.

Thirteen people, including the 11 guards and two police officers, were hospitalized.

To read the whole article, Samsung invests over $1 billion in HCM City factory, on the website of the Vietnam Investment Review and Samsung gets green light for $1bn LCD plant in Vietnam’s southern hub on the website of Tuoi Tre/Tuoi Tre News.

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