Dutch corporate slavery in Argentina

This video is called Tobacco Farm Workers in Argentina_part_02.

This video is called Tobacco Farm Workers in Argentina_part_03.

From Radio Netherlands Worldwide:

Dutch company accused of slavery

Published on 17 January 2011 – 2:01pm

The Argentinian authorities accuse Dutch grain merchant Nidera – one of the world’s biggest – of human trafficking and tax evasion.

Argentinian police on 30 December raided a Nidera plantation near Buenos Aires, where they found 133 seasonal workers living under conditions “resembling a concentration camp”. Seven of the company’s executives were arrested and Nidera was fined 125,000 euros. In addition, the Argentinian tax authorities suspect Nidera of evading 49 million euros in taxes during the 2005-2009 period.

Labour Minister Oscar Cuartango says the conditions under which the workers lived and worked bordered on “crimes against humanity”. Two holes in the ground served as toilets, a container for pesticides was used as a bath. They had no electricity, very little drinking water and were not allowed to leave the plantation. The workers were charged exorbitant amounts for food and water, and earned almost no money.

Nidera has denied all charges, claiming that “It’s a local issue”. The company refused to comment on the arrests of seven of its executives. Nidera says it has not received official notification of the alleged tax evasion. Nidera produces and trades in soy, rice and various seeds and grains, and is active in 22 countries.

In Argentinia, the Nidera investigation is seen as an important victory in the government’s campaign against the exploitation of farm workers. The Nidera plantation is seen as symptomatic for the situation in Argentinian agriculture. Hundreds of thousands of agricultural workers are believed to be working illegally and under very poor circumstances.

The 10 most sued companies in America: here.

Argentina has launched a tax evasion and money-laundering probe of transnational agribusiness giants including US-based Cargill and Bunge, accusing them of evading around 150 million pesos (£23m) in taxes: here.

Maryam Al-Zoubi, Campaign for America’s Future: “With unemployment at a near historic high in the United States, could you imagine any American company bringing in foreign workers to work for them below the minimum wage and with no benefits? Most people would say no. But can you imagine those same Americans forcing foreign workers to stay here, with no pay, and constant abuse? That is actually happening in this country today. Forced labor is a real phenomenon in the United States agriculture business. Without awareness and investigation into where our supplies come from and who businesses are hiring, the American people become unwitting complicit supporters of labor trafficking. Monday June 13th, in anticipation of the reauthorization of the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000 (TVPA), U.S. Rep. Chris Smith (NJ-04) held a Senate committee hearing and panel discussion to review the success and needed improvements of the law”: here.

Dutch 17th-18th century slave trade: here.

6 thoughts on “Dutch corporate slavery in Argentina

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