Samsung Union Calls for Indefinite Strike Over Pay Dispute

Samsung Union Calls for Indefinite Strike Over Pay Dispute

The National Samsung Electronics Union has called an indefinite strike involving some 30,000 members over pay and benefit demands at the end of a three-day general strike. The union said management showed no willingness to discuss their demands.

Representing nearly a quarter of Samsung Electronics' workforce in South Korea, the NSEU said the action has caused disruptions to production—claims the company disputed. A spokeswoman for Samsung Electronics said it was fully certain the disruptions would not affect the production lines and that the company still retained its willingness to negotiate with the union in good faith.

Yet, the union said, "The company has no intention to have a dialogue open with the workers even after the first general strike, so we declare the second general strike starting from July 10th, indefinite in length." About 6,500 workers joined the strike until now, and the union is urging members to participate.

Samsung Electronics refused to comment on the number of workers who went on strike. A protest on Monday attracted about 3,000 participants, according to estimates. Production could not be affected, said Fibonacci Asset Management Global's Jung In Yun.

This is the second major walkout at Samsung Electronics, following another last month at a firm still in the spotlight due to its only having allowed union representation since 2020. It adopted that policy after intense public scrutiny when the company's chairman was prosecuted for market manipulation and bribery.

The stock of Samsung Electronics barely changed, trading flat to slightly lower on the Korea Stock Exchange, following a similar announcement by the NSEU. The company had forecast 15-fold profit growth in the quarter to June 2024 compared to a year earlier, driven by an AI technology frenzy and record prices for advanced chips, last week.

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