According to the latest news on November 23, the Korean Freight Truck Drivers Union announced that it will launch a nationwide strike from 00:00 local time on November 24. The “logistics disruption” that made the Korean economy tremble in June this year will be staged again. For recent shipments to South Korea, please pay attention to the impact of logistics delays
As the background of the whole incident, in January 2020, the South Korean government launched a “safety freight system” aimed at guaranteeing the minimum income and working conditions of truck drivers for a period of three years. As this system is about to expire, the contradictions in various aspects are becoming more and more intense.
Finally, in June this year, 25,000 members of the trade union launched a strike for 8 consecutive days, which caused a short-term stagnation of the logistics artery of the Korean economy. The conflict came to a temporary halt as the South Korean government pledged to move forward with a resolution.
According to calculations by the South Korean government, the strikes in June this year caused a total of 1.6 trillion won (about 1.2 billion U.S. dollars) in losses. Industries such as automobiles, chemicals, and steel were all affected, and well-known companies such as POSCO and Hyundai Motor were once forced to cut production
Now it will all happen again. With negotiations stalled for months, the union decided to strike again. In a statement, the truckers union expected the strike to once again cause “extremely slow” fuel and vehicle deliveries, with logistics in and out of major ports and industrial centers also affected.
The labor union not only demands a more thorough extension of the safety freight system, but also demands that the scope of application of the wage system be expanded from the cement and container transportation industries to drivers in the chemical and agricultural products industries. There are currently several bills in the South Korean National Assembly related to these demands, but none have passed
For the strike to be staged again, South Korean Labor Minister Lee Jung-sik called on trade unions to consider the current economic situation and try to avoid strikes, but to solve problems through dialogue. Lee also put down his harsh words, saying that the government will crack down on any illegal activities of trade unions.
On November 22, at a press conference held on the same day, South Korean Prime Minister Han Deok-soo urged the freight truck driver union to cancel its plan to hold a strike this week to avoid irreversible damage.
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