Threat of strike averted. Trade unions strikes deal with Košice steelworks

The agreement includes a promise to increase salaries and conditions for longer working hours.

U.S. Steel in KošiceU.S. Steel in Košice (Source: TASR)

The representatives of U.S. Steel Košice and local trade unions signed a new amendment to the collective agreement on September 27.

“It offers a salary increase for all our employees who have been working hard on improving the business in the past two years,” said Ján Bača, the steelworks’ spokesperson, as quoted by the TASR newswire. “We can now focus on the difficult challenges lying ahead of us.”

The agreement was preceded by long negotiations, attended by a mediator. Moreover, the trade unions declared a strike alert on June 22. The core of the dispute was the length of the working week.

U.S. Steel employees are on strike alert Read more 

Salaries to go up

According to the agreement, tariff salaries should go up by €60 in average, but by at least €50, with effect from September 1, said Juraj Varga, chair of the OZ KOVO trade unions organisation’s branch at the company.

Moreover, a personal bonus, set by a superior based on an employee’s performance, will increase from €40 to €70, he added.

In addition, all employees will receive at least €100 (but €150 on average) extra by October 1. Every employee will obtain €100 for recreation from the social fund, TASR reported.

Matovič sees decarbonisation as the only way to secure the future of Košice steelmaker Read more 

Prolongation of working hours

The new amendment to the collective agreement also stipulates that the employer will be allowed to prolong the working time at selected workplaces by two hours a week if there are objective reasons, but no more than for three months.

Another potential prolongation (by three months max.) will have to be approved by the trade unions organisation, TASR reported.

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