Unions at Volkswagen‘s Skoda Auto have withdrawn from a deal on flexible working shifts, they stated on Wednesday, increasing pressure on the Czech automaker as they look for a double-digit pay raise and threaten strikes. Union leaders stated more shift agreements could be dropped if wage talks broke down.
Unions have stated they could call a strike in May if no deal is agreed and stated they would look for a 14 percent wage increase for the next 12 months.
In the past week, they rejected management’s offer of a 10 percent boost.
Strikes are a rare event in the central European country whose economic development is motivated by the car sector.
With significant growth in recent years and unemployment dropping to its lowest level in 20 years, wages have been increasing rapidly throughout sectors, increasing pressure on employers.
Skoda, the country’s biggest exporter, has evolved under almost 30 years of Volkswagen ownership to become one of the group’s profit drivers, even surpassing Volkswagen’s luxury brand Audi’s and BMW’s operating margins in 2017.