South Korea: Samsung union declares indefinite strike

South Korea: Samsung union declares indefinite strike
South Korea: Samsung union declares indefinite strike

The union said management did not seem willing to discuss workers’ demands, including a 3.5% pay rise to reflect inflation. Samsung insisted that the labor action would not cause disruptions in production.

A union representing workers at Samsung Electronics in South Korea said on Wednesday it would continue striking “indefinitely.”

The National Samsung Electronics Union (NSEU) had previously declared a three-day strike. The labor action is the largest in the tech giant’s history.

It comes after the firm predicted a substantial second-quarter operating decrease.

What do we know about the strike?

The NSEU said it decided to extend the strike because management had shown no indication of willingness to hold talks.

“(We) declare a second indefinite general strike from July 10, after learning that the management has no willingness to talk,” the NSEU said in a statement.It said it had revised demands to include a 3.5% increase in base salary and a day off to mark the union’s founding.

NSEU vice president Lee Hyun-kuk Lee told the Reuters news agency said that management had offered a 3% rise but the union considered its demands better reflected inflation.

The NSEU urged ‘hesitant’ workers to join the over 5,000 Samsung employees involved in the strike

The NSEU has around 30,000 members, which amounts to nearly a quarter of Samsung’s South Korean workforce.

Over 5,000 Samsung employees have been involved in the strike that began on Monday. The NSEU urged more workers to join the labor action, including “those who are hesitant.”

“Your determination is needed to advance our goals and victory. Let us unite our strength to protect our rights and create a better future,” the union said.

Samsung insists strike won’t affect production

Samsung told the AFP news agency that the union’s labor action wouldn’t cause disruptions in the production process.

“Samsung Electronics will ensure no disruptions occur in the production lines,” a Samsung spokesperson said.

“The company remains committed to engaging in good faith negotiations with the union.”

Meanwhile, Lee told Reuters that the union found that the strike had disrupted production on certain chip lines.

“Eventually, they will kneel and come to the negotiation table. We are confident of victory,” the union said in a statement.

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