An audit of Volkswagen Group’s jointly-owned – with SAIC – site in Xinjiang, China, has found no evidence of forced labour, the automaker said earlier this week.

The audit, which was commissioned by VW, was undertaken by firm Loening Human Rights & Responsible Business GmbH, and executed by a Shenzhen law firm with “extensive experience in social audits and international and Chinese labour law, accompanied on site by Loening,” VW clarified in a statement on its website.

Some 197 employees were interviewed, including 150 Han, and minority ethnic groups, including 47 Uyghurs, the automaker said.

“The employees are well qualified, have belonged to the company for a long period of time of up to ten years, have a low work intensity and are being remunerated above average. Overtime is next to non-existent.”

It comes after shareholders and various human rights groups such as Amnesty International have raised concerns about potential violations relating to the alleged treatment of Uyghurs, Han Chinese and other ethnic minority groups in the Xinjiang region, including alleged forced labour in the region.

China denies the claims.

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Following its audit, VW continued, stating there were “no indications of any use of forced labour or forced laborers among the employees at the plant.”

“Volkswagen has built a long history with China and will remain firmly committed to its presence in China,” it said.