Report: Adidas Olympic gear made in sweatshops

German sportswear giant Adidas came under pressure on Saturday after a British newspaper reported that its London 2012 Olympics clothing was being manufactured "in sweatshop conditions in Indonesia."

Report: Adidas Olympic gear made in sweatshops
Photo: DPA

The Independent newspaper said its exclusive investigation showed that the way clothing is being made for Team GB and Olympic volunteers “makes a mockery of claims by London 2012 organizers that this summer’s Games will be the most ethical ever.”

Workers at nine Indonesian factories with contracts to produce Olympic shoes and clothing for Adidas are working up to 65-hour weeks and earning as little as 5,000 rupiah ($0.55, €0.42) an hour, the report claimed.

It also said that none of the nine factories Adidas employs pays a living wage. This is one “of the cornerstones of the Ethical Trading Initiative (ETI) base code, an internationally recognised labour code adopted by the Olympics organising committee, Locog,” the paper wrote.

It said workers struggling to survive on such wages skip meals and send their children “away to be looked after by grandparents.”

Adidas, in a statement sent to The Local, said, “We take the recent allegations regarding working conditions at some of our suppliers in Indonesia very seriously and will immediately launch an investigation to verify the allegations which are being made and to safeguard worker interests.”

That is in line with what the organising committee told the newspaper. A spokeswoman said the committee had spoken with the German sportswear giant and Adidas “assured us that they are investigating these allegations, the conclusions of which will be made public.”

“We place a high priority on environmental, social and ethical issues when

securing goods and services and take these allegations extremely seriously,”

said a spokeswoman.

The 2012 Olympics run from July 27 to August 12.


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German football club ends partnership with Russia’s Gazprom

German football club Schalke 04 announced Monday it had prematurely ended its partnership with Russian gas giant Gazprom following Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

German football club ends partnership with Russia's Gazprom

The deal between the second-tier German club and Gazprom had been due to run until 2025 with Schalke receiving around €9 million ($10 million) per year in sponsorship.

Had the Gelsenkirchen-based club won promotion back to the Bundesliga at the end of this season, the sponsorship figure would have risen to €15 million annually.

Schalke had already removed the Gazprom logo from their shirts for Saturday’s 1-1 draw at Karlsruhe.

In a statement, Schalke said their finances were “unaffected by this decision”.

“The club’s management is confident that it will be able to present a new partner in the near future.”

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Gazprom representative Matthias Warnig resigned from the club’s supervisory board last Thursday.

Hans-Joachim Watzke, interim president of the German Football Association (DFB), had already hinted there could be financial aid for Schalke if they split from Gazprom.

“If this requires the solidarity of other clubs in Germany to get them out of this situation, then we have to discuss how we can manage that,” Watzke told ZDF.

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