SEOUL, Nov. 14 (Korea Bizwire) — Samsung Electronics Co. plans to deliver an official apology on the long-standing dispute surrounding its former workers suffering from diseases apparently related to the working environments at its factories, the mediation committee said Wednesday.
The apology is part of the agreement reached between one of the world’s leading makers of chips and Supporters for the Health and Rights of People in the Semiconductor Industry (SHARPS), a group of victims suffering from various illnesses such as leukemia after working on Samsung’s production lines.
Earlier this month, the mediation committee between the two sides announced the settlement — which Samsung and victims earlier vowed to accept unconditionally — which included compensation of up to 150 million won (US$132,000) per illness.
The mediation committee said the signing ceremony of the settlement will be held on Nov. 23.
In July, Samsung and SHARPS agreed to accept any decision made by the mediator to end the issue that has been unsettled for over 10 years.
The mediation committee also advised that a CEO of Samsung Electronics should deliver an apology. Industry watchers said Kim Ki-nam, who heads the device solution division, which covers the chip business, will express regrets on behalf of the company.
The settlement, meanwhile, was made on the premise that the correlation between the working environment and disease is uncertain to some extent.
After the signing ceremony, Samsung is expected to start its compensation no later than January, industry watchers said.
The standoff involving the South Korean tech giant surfaced when Hwang Yu-mi, who worked on a Samsung chip production line, died of leukemia in 2007. Victims have been claiming that Samsung should provide compensation, apologize and come up with measures to prevent further outbreaks.