Three-year wage deal signed: Seifsa

Six trade unions signed a three-year wage agreement on Monday, ending a nationwide engineering sector strike, the Steel and Engineering Industries Federation of South Africa (Seifsa) said.

“The agreement provides for a staggered wage increase from 8% to 10% for skilled and unskilled hourly-paid employees respectively,” operations director Lucio Trentini said.

The strike began on July 4.

The National Employers Association of SA (Neasa) did not sign the agreement because its request for a lower entry-level grade for new employees was not met.

Trentini said this would be addressed by the industry policy forum (IPF), to be established as part of the agreement.

About 170 000 workers from the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa, the Metal and Electrical Workers’ Union, and the South African Equity Workers’ Association joined in the strike.

They demanded a wage increase of between 10% and 13%, and a ban on labour brokers.

Solidarity had threatened to join the engineering strike, but this was averted when employers in the Metal and Engineering Industries Bargaining Council reviewed their wage offer to the union last week.—Sapa

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