South Korean automaker Hyundai Motor has filed a $1-million damages suit against its union for financial losses caused by stoppages and threatened to file more suits if the union organises any more illegal walkouts in future.
Hyundai has been plagued by strikes and wildcat work stoppages.
The company is seeking damages compensation from the Hyundai Motor Workers Union for production losses caused by union walkouts in protest at reduced bonus payments, boycotting overtime and staging sit-ins to press for the full bonus payment. Last month the Hyundai Motor management decided to cut the year-end bonus by a third after Hyundai Motor sales fell short of their 2006 sales target of 2.7 million vehicles. The company sold only 2.66 million vehicles. The management has said that payment would be commensurate with business performance.
Hyundai spokesman Park Hyung-Chol said, "Today's legal action concerns the losses made until last week," after the company filed a $1.07-million lawsuit, the largest suit filed against the union.
Since 2000 Hyundai Motor company has filed nine damages lawsuits against the union, though each time it has succumbed to pressure to withdraw them. Hyundai Motor's vice chairman Kim Dong-Jin said this time it would be different.