§ Mr. SMITHERS
asked the Minister of Labour the number of hours per day worked by the operators in Japanese yarn and cotton mills?
§ Miss BONDFIELD
I understand that, since 1st July, 1929, the operatives in Japanese cotton mills work a daily shift of 8½ hours, and that two such shifts a day are worked by the mills. There is no legislation in Japan governing the hours of labour of male workers over 16 years of age in factories; but the Factory Act fixes the maximum working hours for boys under 16 and all female workers at 11 a day, inclusive of one hour's rest. By an Ordinance of 7th June, 1926, employers are permitted, up to 31st August, 1931, to prolong this maximum to 12 hours a day in spinning mills where only one shift a day is worked. Moreover, Section 4 of the Factory Act, which came into force on 1st July, 1929, prohibits night work (that is work between 10 p.m. or 11 p.m., in special cases, and 5 a.m.) for all women workers and for boys under 16, and it is understood that this prohibition has resulted in an almost general reorganisation of work in Japanese cotton mills on a basis of two shifts of 8½ hours each.