Samsung Electronics made an official apology to its employees who had serious professional illnesses and accepted a mediator compensation plan that brought the last line under a decade-long dispute over their work environment.
The South Korean technology giant acknowledged on Friday for the first time that it has failed to properly deal with health risks for workers in its semiconductor and flat screens and promised to improve security.
"Our beloved colleagues and their families have been suffering for a long time, but Samsung Electronics has failed to take care of it earlier," said Kim Ki-nam, chairman of the semiconductor company.
"Samsung also did not manage and fully manage the potential health risks in the production lines of chips and liquid crystals," he added. "We offer our sincere apology."
According to an arbitration proposal signed on Friday, Samsung will offer up to $ 130 million for each employee who has contracted cancer or other serious illnesses, while working at its electronics factories since 1984. The compensation process will begin this year and will continue until 2028 .
Samsung also donated Von50bn to the state health and protection agency in Korea to enhance industrial security in the country, which has one of the highest industrial mortality rates in the developed world and the culture of concealing industrial accidents and illness.
The agreement marks a breakthrough for victims and their families who fought for the official recognition of health risks that semiconductor and LCD plants pose to workers.
Their fight against Samsung began in 2007 when taxi driver Hwang Sang-ki refused to accept a settlement for his 22-year-old daughter who died of leukemia after four years of work at the Samsung plant.
About 260 Samsung employees have been seriously ill over the past decade due to exposure to toxic chemicals, and fewer than 30 have made official financial compensation, says Sharps, advocacy advocacy group in South Korea.
"No apology would be enough for our suffering, but I will consider it a promise of the company [to prevent any recurrence]"Mr Hwang said." Compensation for professional illness is important, but what counts more is prevention. "
G. Hwang urged Samsung to offer compensation for sick workers to its subcontractors and overseas factories, as well as those in its subsidiaries such as Samsung Electro-Mechanics, Samsung SDI and Samsung SDS.
Samsung is set on fire in foreign workstations with UN experts who expressed concern in March about the treatment of workers in factories in Vimppania.
The agreement comes as Samsung, surrounded by corruption scandals and allegations of sabotage, is struggling to repair its damaged corporate image at home.
The successor to the group, Lee Jae-iong, has served a suspended sentence for bribing former State Park's Park Geun-hie for business services. He complained against the decision.
In September, South Korean prosecutors filed an indictment against Lee Sang-hoon, chairman of the board, and dozens of other top executives for alleged sabotage of trade unions.