TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Chinese media outlet The Paper on Tuesday (Dec. 15) described India's ambition to replace Chinese manufacturing as a mere dream in response to the recent riot that erupted at an iPhone factory run by Taiwan's Wistron Corporation (緯創資通) in southern India, relying on racially demeaning characterizations to make its point.
On Saturday (Dec. 12), a Wistron manufacturing plant in Narasapura was looted by nearly 2,000 workers who accused the Taiwanese iPhone maker of violating employment contracts by making payroll cuts. Numerous pieces of furniture and assembly units at the factory were destroyed while thousands of iPhones were reportedly stolen.
Over 140 protestors were arrested by the local police who rushed to stop the riots. Meanwhile, Wistron expressed shock about the incident and said financial losses of somewhere between NT$100 million (US$3.55 million) and NT$200 million were expected.
In a racially charged report published on Tuesday, pro-Beijing The Paper said the incident has highlighted significant problems in India that prevent it from becoming a manufacturing powerhouse. It claimed that workers at the bottom of Indian society are known for their "laziness and low salaries" and that their "technical ability, professionalism, and work efficiency are all far inferior" to their Chinese counterparts.
The Paper emphasized that the low efficiency of Indian workers will severely affect the quality of products and in turn create higher comprehensive labor costs. It also mentioned that it takes an average of 18 days for a foreign enterprise to register in India but that it only takes about half of the time in China.
The Paper said safety issues are another main concern for foreign companies that want to invest in India. It stressed that there had been frequent robberies in the country, including a case in which a truck loaded with China's Xiaomi phones was held up in February.
The digital newspaper then declared that the article was not aimed at criticizing India, but rather at "pouring cold water" on its dream to become the leader in global manufacturing. It concluded that India could only replace Chinese manufacturing by "daydreaming."