Competing With Asian Clothing Tigers

Competing With Asian Clothing Tigers
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The manager of a clothing factory explains how, in Australia, his shirt costs 42 cents a minute to manufacture while in China it costs 1 cent a minute.

Australia, in its desire to compete with the so-called 'Asian Tigers' of manufacturing, is pushing its workers to the limit.

This is an excerpt from the film Land of the Long Weekend, a Film Australia National Interest Program produced in 1994.

Land of the Long Weekend examines the concept of leisure and Australia as the first country in the world to institute a 40-hour working week and a fair and reasonable wage. Conditions like these helped win Australia its reputation as the mythical land of the long weekend.

Yet today, for those with work, overtime has increased and penalty rates are disappearing. The nation’s population is increasingly divided between the over-worked and the under-employed.

Now that Australia is more the land of the level playing field than the land of the long weekend, have we abandoned the idea of the 'fair go'?

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