Ssangyong Motor Co. Ltd.’s creditors will file for bankruptcy and liquidation of the auto maker’s assets if strikers holding Ssangyong’s Pyongtaek, South Korea, plant hostage do not peacefully vacate by Friday, a spokesman tells Ward’s.
At present, there are no plans to meet with the workers’ union, although Ssangyong says it still hopes an acceptable agreement can be reached to put an end to the ongoing strife.
Choi Byeong-hoon, spokesman for Ssangyong’s creditors, says a petition for liquidation will be submitted to the Seoul high court before Aug. 5.
Additionally, creditors plan to file a compensation suit against Ssangyong that seeks to offset the 89 billion won ($72 million) loss they claim they have incurred as a result of the 2-month closure of the plant.
Ssangyong in a statement today says it has increased the amount of compensation for which it is suing strikers from 10 billion won ($8 million) to 15 billion won ($12 million).
Meanwhile, media reports say conditions among the strikers holding the plant have become intolerable, with toilets overflowing because the water supply to that area of the plant was shut off several days ago.
Some of the strikers require medical attention, including surgery for broken bones, while most are hungry and fatigued, as delivery of food and water has been blocked, reports say.
Additionally, the paint plant area is said to reek of fumes from powdered tear gas that police helicopters have repeatedly dropped and also by burning tires ignited by the protesters.
The two sides last Friday consented to solve the situation peacefully and agreed to take part in a meeting on Saturday.
“But our labor union used violence last Friday night, (setting) fire to some of the cars on the property…and (firing) nuts and bolts from catapults at our staff as we tried to check our facilities,” the spokesman says.
“We thought this broke the basic understanding that we had decided to solve things peacefully, and we decided that we could not believe their words anymore.”
The illegal plant occupation is now in its 68th day and has completely halted all Ssangyong sales.