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China Company Halts Compensation for Suicide Victims' Families


Chinese electronics manufacturer Foxconn says it will stop offering financial compensation to the families of employees who kill themselves, in an effort to end a recent spate of suicides.

Eleven workers have killed themselves at Foxconn plants in China this year.

China's state-run news agency, Xinhua, reported Tuesday that most victims' families receive more than $14,600 in compensation. The report cites Foxconn officials who say they have solid evidence that some employers killed themselves for the financial payoff.

Foxconn, which manufacturers products for companies including Apple, Hewlett-Packard and Dell, recently announced plans to raise salaries by up to 66 percent to improve working conditions.

Shares in Foxconn's parent corporation, Taiwan's Hon Hai Precision Industry Company, fell in recent trading due to concerns that the pay increase will cut into profits.

Protesters demonstrated outside of Hon Hai's shareholder meeting in Hong Kong Tuesday, calling on Apple to put more pressure on the company to improve labor conditions.

Apple Chief Executive Steve Jobs has expressed concern about the recent deaths at plants that make Apple's iPhone, but has denied the factories are sweatshops.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and AFP.

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