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handshake thumb medium90 90Fin24 reports that operations at the Hisense Atlantis consumer electronics and home appliance plant near Cape Town have resumed after management reached an agreement with striking members of the National Union of Metalworkers of SA (Numsa).  

The strike by about 300 Numsa members started on 16 January and was followed by management instituting a lock-out.  The striking employees had wanted a 15% wage, saying this would align with an industry agreement.  But, the company’s position was that it was a non-party to the wage schedule determined by the Metal & Engineering Industries Bargaining Council (MEIBC) and, moreover, that in 2018 it had been paying more than the agreed scheduled rates.  This led to a legal interpretation issue, which ultimately culminated in the strike.  Following negotiations that saw no violence, a two-year plant-level agreement was reached for all direct Hisense employees at the plant.  This agreement, which will remain in force until 1 February, 2022, determines staggered increases over the next two years, with additional incentives being introduced for long-term employees, such as extra annual leave days and bonuses.  The agreement also introduces a third shift system.  Vuyo Lufele, Numsa's Western Cape regional secretary, noted that, while initially Numsa had demanded a 15% wage increase across the board, in the end they got 7%.  "We are still satisfied as the company originally offered no increase.  The negotiations were about give and take," he commented.

  • Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Carin Smith at Fin24

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