A lot of women in Kyrgyzstan are working as seamstresses in very harsh conditions. The issue of working conditions in private businesses has been around for over a decade. Seamstresses work in small rooms stuffed with sewing machines and people, sewing day and night for prices like 20-30 soms for a piece of easy-made clothes. Now it’s changing a little bit, at least the underground businesses are coming out which should make them a little more worker-friendly due to required adherence to the labor code (which is actually a nice document with a lot of provisions that would surprise even sophisticated unionists). According to MSN newspaper, the number of state patents for sewing businesses purchased in 2007 doubled and constituted 38000 bringing 8 million soms (220,000 dollars) income to the state. Hopefully the conditions will improve for seamstresses and the experience will help other businesses to be public as well. Interestingly enough most of the sewing products are sold in Russia and Kazakhstan and I am sure that it says ‘made in Turkey’ etc on the labels.