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Do you have a car?  

If so, then parts of your car could be made with forced labor from China. 

Let's explain how. 

The first thing you need to know is that factories in China make the most cars in the world.

Major brands such as General Motors, Tesla, BYD, Toyota, and Volkswagen manufacture and sell cars in China.  

Factories in China are also increasingly exporting cars and car parts to global markets. 

So where does the forced labor come in?  

Well, almost 10 percent of the world’s aluminum, a key material for car making, is produced in the Xinjiang region of China. 

Xinjiang is home to the Uyghurs, a predominantly Muslim Turkic ethnic group whose culture and language are different from China’s majority Han population.  

The Chinese government has long repressed Uyghurs and in recent years committed crimes against humanity in Xinjiang.  

The government’s abuses include: 

  • An estimated one million arbitrary detentions. 
  • an intrusive mass surveillance system 
  • (and) cultural and religious persecution 

The Chinese government has also subjected Uyghurs and other Turkic Muslim communities to forced labor, both in detention centers and through labor transfer programs. 

Labor transfers relocate Uyghurs from their homes in rural areas to urban areas to work in factories.  

Teams of government officials go door-to-door to identify candidates for transfers.  

Human Rights Watch and other organizations analyzed hundreds of Chinese government and company documents available online, and found links between Xinjiang’s aluminum producers and labor transfers.

Uyghurs fear detention or other sanctions if they refuse the transfers, so there’s little choice but to accept the jobs and relocate.  

Labor transfer workers frequently face ideological indoctrination and limits on their freedom of movement.  

So how could aluminum produced by forced labor end up in your car?  

Aluminum from Xinjiang is exported to other regions of China, where it is melted down again, enabling it to enter global supply chains undetected.

And maybe into the car that you use.  

Car companies are aware of the Chinese government’s repression of Uyghurs and the risk of forced labor in their supply chain. 

But some carmakers have succumbed to Chinese government pressure to apply weaker human rights and responsible sourcing standards in their operations in China.

Consumers should not have to buy or drive vehicles with links to grave abuses in Xinjiang.   

So, what can be done?  

When looking to buy a new car, consumers should ask manufacturers how they protect against links to human rights abuses, including forced labor in Xinjiang.

Car companies should require their suppliers, in China and elsewhere, to prove the source of raw materials and show they are free from human rights violations. 

Countries should require companies to disclose their supply chains and prohibit the import of products containing parts or materials produced by forced labor. 

The cars we drive shouldn’t be made with forced labor. 




过去一年,人权观察组织调查了中国西北部新疆地区的强迫劳动问题,中国政府的劳动力转移项目迫使维吾尔族和其他突厥裔穆斯林离乡背井,到外地工作场所做工。 揭露与强迫劳动相关的产品和材料,从汽车中的铝太阳能板中的多晶矽,在未被发现的情况下进入全球供应链的情况,困难重重。


政府主导的强迫劳动,结合新疆更广泛的国家镇压和监控,严重限制了进入该地区的机会,并导致无法安全地采访工人。 人权观察调查人员转而投注数月时间查阅数千网页,搜寻企业参与劳动力转移的证据。 但中国的网路审查制度使得即使这样的研究也变得愈来愈困难。

欧洲议会提出的新法草案版本将授权欧盟执委会(European Commission)对存在国家强迫劳动高度风险的特定地区和特定经济部门(例如新疆生产的铝)进行指定。 从被指定部门和地区向欧盟进口产品而受到调查时,进口商必须证明相关产品非以强迫劳动生产。

欧盟各国政府迄今仍抵制欧洲议会前述提议,而各国提出的法案版本对于国家强迫劳动问题都只有轻描淡写。 根据各国版本,监管机构只针对个别品项进行调查,而非将新疆或其他地区的更广泛产品类别归类为强迫劳动高风险产品。 由于新疆大量产品均为国家强迫劳动产物,且从当地获取资讯十分困难,各国版本的作法将严重损害该法有效性。



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