The Metal Workers’ Union held a common strike.

Hyundai Motor and Kia confronted vital manufacturing disruptions on July 10 because the Metal Workers’ Union underneath the Korean Confederation of Trade Unions (KCTU) held a common strike in Seoul and throughout the nation, demanding amendments to Articles 2 and three of the Trade Union Act and the resignation of the federal government. The strike noticed participation from key subsidiaries of Hyundai Mobis, together with Motras and Unitus, which provide crucial modules and components to Hyundai and Kia factories.

The strike, which concerned an eight-hour strike, with 4 hours every for the day and evening shifts by Motras union members, resulted within the manufacturing disruption of hundreds of autos mixed for Hyundai and Kia. This disruption is especially impactful given Hyundai Motor’s reliance on a “Just In Time” (JIT) manufacturing system, which minimizes stock prices however makes the provision chain extremely delicate to such interruptions.

Hyundai Motor had efficiently reached a tentative wage settlement on July 8 for the sixth consecutive yr and not using a strike, a big achievement in sustaining labor peace. However, the broader labor unrest, together with the participation of Hyundai Mobis’ subsidiaries within the strike, has raised issues about potential prolonged disruptions.

An trade insider commented, “Although the impact of the Metal Workers’ Union’s general strike was not significant as Hyundai, the largest domestic automaker, successfully reached a tentative wage agreement without a strike for six consecutive years, there are concerns about expanded production disruptions if large-scale strikes continue.”

The GM Korea union, which has been on a partial strike since July 8 resulting from difficulties in wage negotiations, additionally joined the Metal Workers’ Union’s common strike on July 10. The union performed a four-hour strike for each day and evening shifts on July 10 and plans a six-hour strike on July 11. This has precipitated manufacturing disruptions for key GM Korea fashions just like the Chevrolet Trax Crossover and Trailblazer.

Hyundai Mobis established subsidiaries like Motras in November 2022 to handle points corresponding to lawsuits over subcontracted staff. The participation of those subsidiaries within the strike highlights the continued challenges in labor relations inside the automotive provide chain.

The Metal Workers’ Union, one of many largest and strongest labor unions in South Korea, is planning a second common strike on July 18, which may additional exacerbate manufacturing points for automakers. The union’s calls for for amendments to the Trade Union Act and the resignation of the federal government replicate broader tensions in labor relations and authorities insurance policies.

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