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Secretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez
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ILAB, OSEC Notices

Notice of Final Determination Regarding Forced/Indentured Child Labor Pursuant to Executive Order 13126   [5/12/2003]
[PDF]
FR Doc 03-11677

[Federal Register: May 12, 2003 (Volume 68, Number 91)]
[Notices]               
[Page 25389-25390]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
[DOCID:fr12my03-94]                         

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DEPARTMENT OF LABOR

Bureau of International Labor Affairs

 
Notice of Final Determination Regarding Forced/Indentured Child 
Labor Pursuant to Executive Order 13126

AGENCY: Office of the Secretary, Labor.

ACTION: Notice of final determination regarding forced child labor in 
the firecracker industry in China.

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SUMMARY: This notice sets forth the final determination regarding a May 
2001 submission, pursuant to Executive Order 13126 (``Prohibition of 
Acquisition of Products Produced by Forced or Indentured Child Labor'') 
and alleging forced child labor in the firecracker industry in China. 
The Department of Labor, in consultation and cooperation with the 
Departments of Treasury and State, has determined that firecrackers 
from China should not be added to final list of products prohibited 
from acquisition under Executive Order 13126, based on the lack of 
recent, credible and appropriately corroborated information indicating 
that this product is being manufactured with forced or indentured child 
labor. The review of this country/

[[Page 25390]]

product was conducted pursuant to Executive Order 13126 and the 
Department's ``Procedural Guidelines for Maintenance of the List of 
Products Requiring Federal Contractor Certification as to Forced or 
Indentured Child Labor.''

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Background

    Executive Order No. 13126, which was published in the Federal 
Register on June 16, 1999 (64 FR 32383), declared that it was ``the 
policy of the United States Government * * * that the executive 
agencies shall take appropriate actions to enforce the laws prohibiting 
the manufacture or importation of goods, wares articles, and 
merchandise mined, produced or manufactured wholly or in part by forced 
or indentured child labor''. Pursuant to the Executive Order, and 
following public notice and comment, the Department of Labor published 
in the January 18, 2001 Federal Register, a final list of products, 
identified by their country of origin, that the Department, in 
consultation and cooperation with the Departments of State and 
Treasury, has a reasonable basis to believe might have been mined, 
produced or manufactured with forced or indentured child labor. In 
addition to this list, the Department of Labor also published on 
January 18, 2001, a notice of procedural guidelines for maintaining, 
reviewing, and, as appropriate, revising the list of products required 
by Executive Order 13126. (66 FR 5351). The list of products can be 
accessed on the Internet at http://www.dol.gov/ilab or can be obtained 
from: International Child Labor Program (ICLP), Bureau of International 
Labor Affairs, Room S-5307, U.S. Department of Labor, 200 Constitution 
Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20210; telephone: (202) 693-4843; fax (202) 
693-4830. A copy of the Procedural Guidelines is also available from 
this office.
    Pursuant to Section 3 of the Executive Order, the Federal 
Acquisition Regulatory Councils published a final rule in the Federal 
Register on January 18, 2001, providing that federal contractors who 
supply products that appear on the list issued by the Department of 
Labor must certify to the contracting officer that the contractor, or, 
in the case of an incorporated contractor, a responsible official of 
the contractor, has made a good faith effort to determine whether 
forced or indentured child labor was used to mine, produce or 
manufacture any product furnished under the contract and that, on the 
basis of those efforts, the contractor is unaware of any such use of 
child labor. (48 CFR subpart 22.15). The regulation also imposes other 
requirements with respect to contracts for products on the list of 
products.

II. China/Firecrackers Executive Order Submission

    On June 29, 2001, the Department of Labor accepted for review a 
submission under Executive Order 13126 regarding the use of forced 
child labor in the firecracker industry in China. The submission, which 
was provided by State Department Watch, consisted of a newspaper 
article with information describing a March 2001 incident in which 
children in Jiangxi Province, China were allegedly killed while being 
forced to manufacture firecrackers at their school.
    In accordance with the ``Procedural Guidelines for Maintenance of 
the List,'' the Department initiated a review into the manufacturing of 
this product using forced or indentured child labor in China. In 
conducting the review, the Department focused on available information 
concerning the use of forced or indentured child labor from a variety 
of sources, including the Departments of State and Treasury, 
nongovernmental organizations, and international organizations. In 
addition, as part of its review effort, the Department released a 
Federal Register notice on August 21, 2002, requesting information from 
the public on the use of forced child labor in the manufacturing of 
firecrackers in China. The Department of Labor received no responses to 
the August 2002 notice. Through this review process, insufficient 
recent and credible evidence was acquired to corroborate the news 
article and to establish a reasonable basis to believe that this 
product is being manufactured with forced or indentured child labor in 
China.

III. Final Determination

    In general, the Department of Labor considers and weighs several 
factors in making determinations under the Executive Order: the nature 
of the information describing the use of forced or indentured child 
labor; the source of the information; the date of the information; the 
extent of corroboration of the information by appropriate resources; 
and whether the information involved more than an isolated incident. In 
addition, the Department of Labor also takes into consideration whether 
recent, credible efforts are being made to address forced or indentured 
child labor in a particular country or industry.
    Based on the lack of recent, credible and appropriately 
corroborated information found through the review process to establish 
a reasonable basis to believe that this product is manufactured with 
forced or indentured child labor, and as the submitted news article is 
insufficient by itself to establish such a basis, the Department of 
Labor, after consulting with the Departments of Treasury and State, has 
determined that firecrackers from China should not be added to the 
Executive Order 13126 list of products.

    Signed at Washington, DC this 30th day of April 2003.
Martha E. Newton,
Acting Deputy Under Secretary for International Labor Affairs.
[FR Doc. 03-11677 Filed 5-9-03; 8:45 am]

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