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Kia workers tentatively agree on revised wage offers

All News 01:56 January 15, 2020

SEOUL, Jan. 15 (Yonhap) -- Unionized workers at Kia Motors Corp. have tentatively agreed on the company's revised offerings in wage negotiations for the year of 2019, the company said Wednesday.

Last month, Kia and its union reached a tentative wage and collective bargaining deal but 56 percent of 27,050 Kia workers voted down the deal.

The union workers staged three rounds of partial strikes last month and held an eight-hour strike on Monday.

They demanded the company narrow an income gap with workers at bigger affiliate Hyundai Motor Co. But the company balked at it, citing growing uncertainties in global automobile markets.

Kia workers tentatively agree on revised wage offers - 1

Under the initial agreement, Kia offered to raise workers' basic monthly wage by 40,000 won (US$34) and provide bonuses worth one and a half months of wages plus cash of 3.2 million won per worker.

On top of the initial offers, the company proposed to donate 1 billion won to the union's welfare fund, allow all workers to take off on May 4 to enjoy holidays from May 1-5 and set up a labor-management task force team to handle overtime work.

The union tentatively accepted the company's proposals.

The revised wage deal is subject to a vote by union members on Friday.

For the whole of 2019, Kia's sales fell 1.5 percent to 2.77 million vehicles from 2.81 million units a year earlier due to lower demand in China and emerging markets.

In 2020, it aims to sell 2.96 million autos helped by its SUV models such as the Telluride and the Sorento.

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