Hyundai Motor Co.'s temporary workers recently agreed to end a one-month sit-in that disrupted the production of subcompact cars such as the new Accent and the Verna.
Since Nov. 15, 2010, subcontracted employees had occupied a factory in Hyundai's largest domestic production base. Kim Sang-min, a spokesperson for the Korean Metal Workers' Union says it has agreed to end the strike and commence talks with management.
The union is the umbrella union of Hyundai contract workers. The strike had cost Hyundai KPW315 billion ($277 million) in lost production, causing it to report the worst November 2010 sales among Korean automakers.
Labor unrest has often caused disruptions in Asia’s fourth-largest economy. Hyundai's union, which is the most powerful in the country, agreed not to hold a strike in 2010 for the second consecutive year. Temporary workers seek job security, which employers refuse to deliver so as to cut costs and raise flexibility.
Striking workers came under mounting pressure from management and even regular employees to end the strike and Hyundai filed a combined KPW16.2 billion in damage suits against striking unionists. Hyundai shares closed up 2.5 percent in a broader market that was up 1.7 percent. [via autonews - sub. required]