Carmakers’ trade unions want higher salaries

Trade unionists in Volkswagen and Kia are negotiating for a rise in salaries.

Volkswagen Slovakia plantVolkswagen Slovakia plant (Source: Courtesy of VW Slovakia)

Collective negotiations between trade unions and Bratislava-based carmaker Volkswagen started on January 31. The company’s management opened talks with two trade unions active in the factory: one running under the OZ KOVO trade unions organisation, and the second Modern Trade Unions Volkswagen which recently formed in the firm.

The latter has introduced 11 specific conditions, including an increase in wages by as much as 16 percent, as well as improving working conditions, such as a higher basic calculation of vacations or longer paid breaks.

Trade unions active in other carmakers in Slovakia also want to fight for a significant increase in wages this year, the Pravda daily reported.

“We hope that the company’s management shares our opinion that Volkswagen Slovakia achieves great results thanks to qualified work of all of its employees,” said Zoroslav Smolinský, chair of the Modern Trade Unions Volkswagen, as quoted by the TASR newswire, when presenting their proposal.

Read also:Slovakia again breaks car production record Read more 

The good economic performance should be reflected in both higher wages and better working conditions, Smolinský added.

The average gross wage at the carmaker is currently €1,795 a month. This, however, does not include bonuses for leading managers, Pravda reported.

“Our aim is to secure for our employees a stable working position also for the future,” said Eric Reuting, member of the board of directors at Volkswagen Slovakia, as quoted in the press release.

He hopes they will find solutions acceptable for both parties.

Read also:New trade union at Volkswagen Read more 

Other trade unions ask for more too

Meanwhile, trade unionists in Žilina-based carmaker Kia Motors Slovakia want wages to rise this year as well. While they propose a 10-percent increase for employees in production, the wages of administrative staffers may rise by 7 percent.

“The Žilina-based carmaker is regularly assessed as the best plant in the whole group in most of the indicators,” said Miroslav Chládek, head of the trade unions in Kia, as quoted by Pravda, when explaining their proposal.

The reason why the suggested rise for employees in production is higher is that they currently earn less than those in administration.

As for other benefits, they ask for higher bonuses for those who do not come to work due to illness, for example, Pravda reported.

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