FGV denies WSJ allegations of human rights abuses

Felda Global Ventures Holdings Bhd (FGV) has denied Wall Street Journal’s (WSJ) and subsequent media reports quoting WSJ on allegations of human rights abuses on its plantations.

In a statement on Monday, the plantation conglomerate said it has provided complete responses to WSJ, which the media chose to use only a small part for their article.

“Therefore, allow us to provide our answers categorically to the allegations.

“FGV currently employs about 33,720 foreign workers (about 85 per cent of our workforce) legally and in full observance of regulatory requirements,” it said.

On the minimum wage concerns, FGV said its labour policy was guided by the Malaysian Agriculture Producers Association, which provided the industry standard on minimum wages and was regulated by Ministry of Human Resources.

However, the worker must meet the minimum 26 working days as required by regulation in order to receive minimum wage, it said.

“Apart from that, all foreign workers employed are accorded the same rights and privileges as Malaysians, with our standardised labour policies grounded in Malaysia’s labour legislation, as well as in International Labour Organisation Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work,” it said.

All matters pertaining to the employment of Foreign Workers were managed by FGV Department of Labour under Palm Upstream Cluster, it said.

“We state unequivocally our commitment to ethical and transparent operations to ensure equitable long-term value for all our stakeholders: including employees, smallholders and plantation workers, without whom we would not be able to operate daily,” it said.

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