Motor Co. Ltd. workers have voted to accept the tentative agreement reached between their union representatives and management.
“It’s over,” aspokesman confirms to Ward's. “The workers can now go back to their jobs. I’m very happy for our company because we have a lot of cars to build.”
Through July 26, Hyundai had lost 93,882 units of production, which it calculates to be worth 1.31 trillion won ($1.37 billion). The partial work stoppages occurred on 21 workdays from June 26-July 26, when the tentative agreement was reached.
The Hyundai settlement is seen by analysts as a bellwether for the rest of the South Korean automotive industry.
Kia Motors Corp. workers remain on partial-strike status, a union official tells Ward's. Four lines were stopped for two hours July 27, followed by a 4-hour work stoppage July 28.
Kia officials say, historically, Hyundai’s settlement sets the terms for Kia’s management to follow. Kia workers have scheduled 2-hours strikes for Aug. 7-8 and a 4-hour work stoppage Aug. 9.
The Hyundai agreement provides for a 5.1%, 70,665 won ($74.04) average increase in monthly base pay. It also provides for a signing bonus of one-month’s pay, plus 1 million won ($1,048).
GM Daewoo Auto & Technology workers rejected a 3.9%, 56,000 won ($58.68) monthly wage increase and a one-time lump sum “celebration” payment of 2 million won ($2,096) as a reward for reaching the agreement with virtually no strike action.
The workers also turned down a one-time bonus of 1 million won ($1,048) before the end of 2006.
A GMDAT spokesman tells Ward's no future talks are scheduled.
While workers atSamsung Motors Inc. are not unionized, company officials there say that the wage-settlement pattern set by competitors is a factor in adjusting employee wages and other benefits.
Meanwhile, Ssangyong Motors Co. Ltd. workers have declared a strike ahead of wage and benefit talks. The union says it is angry with management plans to terminate 986 of the company’s 5,300 employees, in a restructuring move. They include 782 production workers and 204 administrative staff.
The union also is demanding that candidate for co-CEO of Ssangyong Motors, Phillip Murtaugh, be barred from taking his job.
Murtaugh, the former chief of GM China Group, was appointed co-CEO by Shanghai Automotive Industrial Corp., which owns 51% of Ssangyong Motors. The union identifies Murtaugh as a “restructuring specialist.”
Murtau is expected to replace incumbent co-CEO Jiang Zhiwe after Ssangyong board members vote to approve the appointment Aug. 11.