February 22, 2024

A view reveals the Malacca Freeway ship on the shore as port staff block the loading of Tesla autos, in Malmo, Sweden, November 7, 2023. Johan Nilsson/TT Information Company/by way of Portal/File Picture purchase license rights

STOCKHOLM, Nov 17 (Portal) – Port staff in Sweden pledged on Friday to refuse to unload Tesla vehicles (TSLA.O) in any respect ports within the nation as they continued their industrial motion in keeping with Tesla staff’ calls for collective agreements have expanded.

Tesla, co-founded by billionaire Elon Musk, doesn’t produce in Sweden, however its electrical vehicles are serviced by greater than 120 mechanics affiliated with the Swedish union IF Metall, which started a strike on October 27.

Dock staff joined the mechanics’ strike on November 7 and blocked Sweden’s 4 largest ports for Tesla vehicles. This was expanded to all ports at 12pm (1100 GMT) on Friday.

A spokesman for the Transport union, whose members embody port staff, mentioned that Swedish ports usually obtained one to 3 deliveries of Tesla vehicles per week, however no deliveries had arrived for the reason that strike started.

“So the blockade is working,” mentioned the spokesman.

US-based Tesla, which revolutionized the electrical automotive market, has managed to keep away from collective bargaining agreements regulating wages and dealing situations with its roughly 127,000 staff, and Musk has been vocal about his opposition to unions.

Marie Nilsson, head of IF Metall, informed Portal on Friday that the union had obtained some indications early within the dispute that Tesla was utilizing strike-breaking ways by flying staff in from different international locations.

“We’ve by no means skilled something like this earlier than…we haven’t handled this in Sweden since round 1937,” says Nilsson.

“And that compelled us to escalate the battle,” she added.

If Sweden can break Tesla’s resistance, it may set a precedent for different international locations.

Thus far, the unions within the USA and Germany haven’t succeeded in forcing the automotive producer to simply accept collective agreements.

“As soon as they arrive to Sweden, they should observe the principles. We’ve sure norms right here and he (Musk) has to simply accept them,” mentioned Torbjorn Johansson, negotiating secretary on the Swedish Commerce Union Confederation LO.

“Swedish staff can not afford to lose this combat.”

Swedish unions have succeeded earlier than getting international firms to simply accept native industrial practices.

Within the Nineties, the American toy firm Toys “R” Us signed a collective settlement with its 130 Swedish staff after a three-month strike.

Nilsson mentioned IF Metall has no plans to finish the strike any time quickly.

“So long as it’s vital,” she mentioned.

Along with longshoremen, unionized cleaners are refusing to wash Tesla buildings and postal staff have stopped delivering mail.

On Friday, electricians stopped upkeep and restore work for Tesla, together with at its charging stations throughout Sweden.

Swedish staff are additionally supported by the Norwegian Fellesforbundet, the most important union within the Norwegian Confederation of Commerce Unions LO.

The lawsuit towards Tesla in Sweden is prone to escalate additional on November 24 if no settlement is reached, when about 50 unionized staff at Hydro Extrusions, a subsidiary of Norwegian aluminum and power firm Hydro (NHY.OL), cease engaged on Tesla Automotive merchandise.

Tesla has not responded to repeated requests for remark.

Reporting by Marie Mannes Extra reporting by Louise Rasmussen, Johan Ahlander, Ilze Filks and Johannes Birkebaek Modifying by Simon Johnson, Mark Potter and Susan Fenton

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Company information correspondent based mostly in Stockholm, primarily reporting on all the pieces associated to retail and industrial firms in Sweden, in addition to different sectors with Swedish firms. She beforehand lined the final Nordic inventory market from Gdansk, masking a variety of matters from firms exiting Russia to M&As and provide chain points. Marie has levels in journalism and worldwide relations and is eager about discovering tales that drive the market and that include unreported parts.