More than a week ago, BMW, along with other automakers, have temporarily stopped production at their South African plants due to an employee strike. South African autoworkers were seeking wage increases more than triple the inflation rate.
The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa, which represents 31,000 autoworkers, said it had rejected employers’ offer of a 7 percent increase in the first year and a raise equal to consumer price inflation in the remaining two years. The union was demanding a 15 percent wage increase.
On the eighth date of the strike, South African automobile manufacturers and a union representing thousands of auto workers have reached a deal on wages. The Automobile Manufacturers Employers Organisation and union Numsa signed a three-year wage deal on Friday that will see workers getting a 10 percent increase this year, and 9 percent in the next two years.
The strike has not only affected BMW, but other large automakers, including Toyota, Ford, VW, Nissan, Daimler and GM.
The stoppage led to lost production of about 17,000 vehicles. South Africa’s auto industry, which the industry said accounts for about 6 percent to 7 percent of the country’s GDP, produces about 420,000 vehicles a year.