‘Suggest why some people and not others benefit from the growth of TNCs’
Trans-National Corporations are described as being the ‘architects’ of globalisation because they build bridges between ex-colonial nations’ economies and societies via trade and the outsourcing of manufacturing. However, the growth of TNCs can have a negative impact on many peoples’ lifestyles.
Firstly, the low wages that are paid to employees working for factories are a major issue because in some cases, exploitation occurs. Apple, the American multinational cooperation that designs, develops and sells Apple products, outsourced to China due to the cheap labour and subsequently took advantage by paying workers as little as $2.00 per hour in 2010. High output per person is expected in Apple factories, with one iphone being assembled every 30 seconds during 14 hour shifts; that is 1680 iphones in one shift. For this, workers can be expected to receive £60 per week, which is simply unethical since Apple generates a profit of $7million per hour. Of course, the profit-motivated company benefits greatly from the low labour costs and in 2009 totalled revenue of $65 billion. Similarly, Starbucks has been named as one of the many TNCs that exploit their vulnerable, yet dedicated, workers. In 2007, it was revealed that coffee farmers were being paid $0.57 per pound (lb) of Ethiopian Sidamo coffee, a mere 2.2% of its regular retail price. Furthermore, over 2 million children are forced to work over 29.9 hours a week in family farms in Sidamo alone in order to support their families who were once promised wealth by Starbucks. Nonetheless, Starbucks is still able to charge approximately $3 for a coffee in New York, of which they sell 10,465,000 worldwide a day. It was uncovered in August 2012 that workers at a Disney factory in South China earned only $560 for a month of 22-hour days with no holidays and no paid overtime. This means that workers, including children, are working 440 hours a...
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