GM’s employees from the South Korean factories plan a three-day strike next week, due to annual wage talks.
The employees may go on a full strike if there will be no change in the wage talks. A full strike will only draw back investors who already face the euro zone crisis and the slow growth in China. The militant labor unions in South Korea have been tamed by the current Lee Myung-bak administration, which reduced the number of full-time unionists.
It seems that labor circles are now gaining in power ahead of presidential elections in December. The Hyundai Motor‘s labor union already plans to join the Metal Workers Union and go on strike on July 13th and July 20th. If they go ahead with their plan, this will be Hyundai Motor’s first strike in four years. kia Motors’ employees also plan a strike on July 11th.
The most arduous demand of the labor union is to end overnight work, but auto makers fear that this will bring a decrease of production. The labor union at GM Korea idles work for 6-8 hours on July 3rd, 5th and 6th, making the company the first auto maker in South Korea to hold a strike this year.