Forced labour camps in China

Chairwoman Hautala met with Peter Muller, Representative from the Laogai Research Foundation, on 12. November to discuss China’s extensive system of forced-labor prison camps. This brutal system remains one of the darkest parts of China´s human rights record. Currently there are about 1000 forced-labour camps in China and as providers of free labour they form notable part of the Chinese economy. Thus most of the so called “Laogai camps” operate a commercial enterprise of some kind. Due to different reasons it is very difficult to trace goods which have been produced in the Laogai camps and adherence to international trade standards has been weak. As this offers good trade prospects the objections from most states trading with China have been muted.