Hyundai unions warn of impending strikes image

South Korea’s biggest automaker could have its workers enter strikes, warns their union leaders, as the company and its labor representatives have reached a stalemate in their ongoing negotiations.

Hyundai makes at least a third of the total vehicle output in factories at home, and a production cut caused by worker strike would further put pressure on the automaker – which is already battling the effects of its countries very strong currency, that eats away export profits.

“The company’s attitude is testing our rationality,” said Hwang Ki Tae, spokesman for the Hyundai Motor workers’ union during an interview in Ulsan, South Korea. “In this situation, our stance is that we may have no choice but to go on strike.”

“The current union leader is known to be a pragmatist,” said on the comments Lee Sang Hyun, an analyst at NH Investment & Securities. “I doubt that Lee Kyung Hoon will make drastic decisions that may hurt the company extensively.”

According to the union, the demands for this year include a 7 % or 159,614 won ($157) monthly wage hike, bonuses worth 30% of the carmaker’s net income and to set the work hours per week limit at 52.

According to the union leader, the workers representatives left the last two rounds of negotiations and the talks are making “no progress” after company officials wanted to discuss their demands before negotiating the new terms.

Via Bloomberg