Hyundai agrees to give 2,000 workers regular status

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Hyundai agrees to give 2,000 workers regular status

Hyundai Motor, the nation’s largest automaker, said yesterday it will give regular jobs to nearly 2,000 workers at its in-house subcontractors in a bid to solve long-standing tension surrounding its labor conditions.

On Monday, Hyundai management, representatives from the subcontractors, and regular and irregular workers’ unions from the Asan and Jeonju plants met at the automakers’ Ulsan plant and agreed to promote a total of 4,000 workers from in-house subcontractors to regular Hyundai employees by 2015.

Since July 2012, Hyundai has switched the status of 2,038 workers from subcontracted to regular employees, which leaves 1,962 jobs to be filled by irregular workers.

Korea’s largest automaker said that as a part of the deal, it is taking applications from subcontracted workers until Tuesday. The company hasn’t confirmed how many jobs it will fill in this round of hiring, which will be completed next month.

The applicants will go through interviews and medical check-ups and those who are hired will start working at the factories in November after they complete a training program.

“By quickly making the agreement, we are satisfying the desires of in-house subcontractors to be regular workers and also solving workforce shortage in our factories,” Hyundai said in a release.

Hyundai has faced several class-action lawsuits with its subcontractors regarding their job status. However, with Monday’s decision, the company expects that some of the lawsuits will be dropped. The agreement reportedly stipulates that a worker must forfeit any lawsuits before applying for a regular position.

Hyundai’s regular workers’ union is scheduled to launch a partial strike today following sluggish progress in their wage negotiations regarding the base pay issue.

BY JOO KYUNG-DON [kjoo@joongang.co.kr]













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