Korean Court Rules in Favor of HHI Workers

Unionized workers of South Korean shipbuilding giant Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI) have won a court battle on Thursday, according to which HHI should count regular bonuses as base pay, Yonhap news agency informed.

Ten workers had filed suit against HHI in 2014, urging for regularly paid bonuses to be included as ordinary wages.

According to Yonhap, HHI’s workers receive 800 percent of their base salary as bonuses. The ruling also covers workers at Hyundai Mipo Dockyard.

HHI’s talks with labour unions on the wage and collective bargaining agreement for the year 2014 has been sidetracked several times throughout 2014.

The failure to reach any kind of agreement has seen unionized workers stage industrial action in November 2014, the first in almost two decades.

Yonhap said that a second tentative agreement was reached between HHI’s labor and management on Wednesday on a pay raise, which is subject to vote by the union.

The first agreement proposal was voted down by the union early January. The agreement stipulated for a basic pay of KRW 37,000 (USD 33.36), representing a 2 percent increase; a one-off bonus of KRW two million (USD 1,800) plus company shares equal to 150 percent of their pay.

The workers had called for 132,000 won pay raise, and at least 250 percent of the base salary as performance-based benefits.

The union is expected to vote on the second agreement on Monday.

World Maritime News Staff

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Posted on February 12, 2015

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