Labor unions are expected to stage a strike over the merger between Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI), the nation`s No. 1 shipbuilder, and Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering (DSME), the nation`s second-largest shipbuilding industry.
In particular, HHI labor union, which underwent restructuring, is voicing concerns that its acquisition of DSME could trigger the restructuring again.
"If the management pushes ahead with the acquisition of DSME without declaring a guarantee for the total employment, the labor-management relationship will end up collapsing," the HHI union said on Feb. 11.
"The management should officially apologize to the members for pushing for the acquisition in secret, and guarantee the union's direct participation in all the process for the acquisition," it said.
The labor union said, "It is obvious that we will have to restructure our manpower, starting with design, sales, and research sectors. So far, more than 13 trillion won of public funds has been invested in DSME, and its debt ratio is 216 percent. If the recovery of the shipbuilding industry is slow or not expected, the acquisition of DSME will lead to a joint failure and they will surely pass the responsibility to the workers again."
DSME labor union is also tough. In particular, the union is ready to go on a strike, shouting its opposition to the sale. It is also planning to hold a vote on the strike related to the sale dispute between Feb. 18 and 19.
DSME labor union stressed, "Since the fight is a struggle for the survival of all workers, the labor union should stage the struggle with not only office workers but also the local residents in Geoje as well."