Belgium’s three main unions have called on Monday for efforts to reinvigorate the European economy by centering on taxing multinationals and boosting public investment instead of slashing public services.
It was Belgium’s first general strike in 18 years.
The strike also affected the private sector, with production at the Audi and Volvo car plants disrupted, while employees walked off the job at the Coca-Cola factory near Antwerp.
„We closed the factory on Monday because of the strike. We lost a production day with 520 units.
On Saturday 4/2 and 11/2 we will remove the production with one shift in order to deliver the production volume of the new A1 sportback. This new car will be launched in 2 weeks in all over the world.“, an Audi representative told inautoenws.
On the same time Volvo said it’s Ghent plant lost about 1100 cars on Monday.
“In total about 1100 cars that were scheduled, could not be produced.
Due to the fact that Volvo Cars Gent is running ahead of schedule, the strike had no negative impact on customers.”
One of Belgium’s main unions, known as FGTB in French and ABVV in Flemish, said the strike was necessary because negotiations with the government were going slowly and not producing specific results.