SOUTH KOREA: Temps keep Hyundai line idle for 22nd day
The assembly line at Hyundai Motor’s Ulsan plant occupied by striking temporary workers remained idle for the 22nd day on Monday despite the company’s attempts to resume operations.
On Monday the company attempted to bring the facility back online by bypassing areas occupied by the striking workers but the efforts were soon called off due to interference from the temps, Hyundai officials told the Korea Herald.
Hyundai had modified the assembly line to allow part of the production process to be carried out manually in order to bypass areas under the control of striking workers ? the automated storage facility, and the conveyor that connects the paint shop to the general assembly section of the line, the report said.
Temporary employees of Hyundai’s subcontractors working at the Ulsan plant have been striking since 15 November, demanding that they be employed on regular contracts directly by the carmaker.
The temporary workers had occupied three assembly lines early on in the strike but withdrew from other facilities maintaining control only over the line that produces the Accent, Click and Verna subcompacts.
Hyundai told the Korea Herald the strike has so far cost it about 24,000 units in lost production and KRW270.4bn (US$238.1m) in lost revenues.
The automaker has held three-way talks between the temp workers’ union and Hyundai’s union and management but failed to find common ground.
Members of the temporary workers’ union not taking part in the sit-in strike began a six-day tour of facilities of Hyundai and other companies with temporary workers to shore up support for their cause on Sunday.