No date set for talks to end tyre sector strike - union

26th July 2007 By: Nelendhre Moodley

A date for the next meeting in the wage dispute between tyre industry employers and workers has not been scheduled, after wage negotiations deadlocked this week.

The strike has continued on its fifth day with almost 4 000 of the 6 000 workers having downed tools last week.

“Since the talks collapsed on Tuesday, there has been no agreement or consultation. The strike is still continuing,” National Union of Metalworkers South Africa (Numsa) spokesperson Mziwakhe Hlangani said on Thursday.

Industry spokesperson Attie Higgs said that he was hopeful that a meeting between employers and trade unions would take place sometime next week.

Tyre manufacturers Dunlop, Continental and Goodyear had made a 7,5% wage offer, with Bridgestone having offered a 7% wage increase.

Unions are demanding 10%.

Higgs reiterated his earlier sentiments saying that in the short term the strike impact was limited, but that should the strike extend over a longer period, the impact would be severe.

Tyre manufacturer Continental Tyres on Tuesday reported limited production of some 30%.

Goodyear too was currently sustaining limited production, however, there was no production at Bridgestone as the company had issued a lock out notice to all employees on Friday.

Bridgestone group communications GM Romano Daniels had said on Tuesday that the company could not afford an extended strike.