YST in Financial Trouble
July 19 2001
Workers & Suppliers Remain Unpaid
By Stephen Jack
Around 50 Yu-Sheng Traffic Parts (YST) workers demonstrated at the company's Houli factory in central Taiwan on Saturday morning (June 14).
Protesters were angry over not being paid for three months. After failing to find the President of YST, George Ge, they took their protest to his home but were still unable to locate him.
Local media said that YST, a headset and bottom bracket maker, also owed suppliers between NT$1 billion - NT$2 billion (US$2.85 million - US$5.7 million).
YST spokesperson Juliana Chi acknowledged that YST has recently been in financial difficulty. "The main point is that the bike market is down and all the production is moving to China." But YST has no intention of closing its Taiwan operations, but would scale back in-house manufacturing in favor of increasing work with sub-contractors.
Before the protests YST had been negotiating with the employees. YST, unable to pay owed wages in a lump sum payment had offered a gradual payment scheme but this was rejected by the workers prior to Saturday's protest, Ms Chi told Bikexpo. She insisted that YST had not fired the workers who had effectively quit by breaking work contracts. Workers and suppliers will eventually get paid when the company secures a new bank loan, she said.
The protesting workers make up about half of YST's 100-strong Taiwan workforce.
Established in 1972, YST's customers include Raleigh and Victoria Precision in Canada. The company also manufactures auto parts.