The conflict in the tire industry intensified: the union entrenched itself in the Ministry of Labor and there are new blockades

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Union members on the balcony of Labor headquarters on Callao Street (Luciano Gonzalez)
Union members on the balcony of Labor headquarters on Callao Street (Luciano Gonzalez)

The conflict in the tire industry has been going on for five months and there seems to be no solution in sight.

Amid new blockades of the factories and with members of the Unified Union of Argentine Tire Workers – Sutna, which brings together workers in the sector – who have declared an indefinite strike and holed themselves up in one of the offices of the Ministry of Labour, amid an increasingly complex situation. From the hardening of the claim vThere is renewed talk of a possible lack of roofs while other union members remain in front of the ministry and disrupt traffic on Callao Avenue.

“Today was a very difficult day”they declared late on Wednesday, September 21, from FATE, one of the companies involved.

Sutna's protest and other union and political forces (Luciano Gonzalez)
Sutna’s protest and other union and political forces (Luciano Gonzalez)

“After 5 months of conflict, a joint offer was made, which you may or may not like, but despite the time that has elapsed, instead of lowering the decibels and having a dialogue, what happened at the hearing was that the union blocked the facilities again. This time there was a very vicious attitude in the Ministry, very aggressive. In the end they occupied the ministry. There is no channel of dialogue and we don’t know the rationale behind everything that is happening. We’re on our way to something very serious that I don’t see how could be unlocked‘ highlighted by the company that chairs it Javier Madane’s Quintanilla.

FATE, Bridgestone and Pirelli are the main brands with local manufacturing and more than 60% of the Argentine market. They produce about 6 million tires a year locally and that’s an estimate Since the conflict began, they stopped producing more than 1.3 million units, almost a quarter of annual production. The factories of the three companies were again blocked by the union.

From the private sector, they describe the union’s actions as “wild” and reiterate that payment of 200% of the hours worked on weekends is required, a measure alien to the current collective bargaining agreement that establishes the 6×2 system: operators Work 6 consecutive days and then have 2 francs on alternate days. For each day worked, they charge 100% regardless of the day of the week, and if they add additional days, they charge an additional 150% or 200% depending on the day.

Sutna is the acronym for the Unified Union of Argentine Tire Workers (Luciano Gonzalez).
Sutna is the acronym for the Unified Union of Argentine Tire Workers (Luciano Gonzalez).

“There are no longer any arbitration bodies. We are stuck in a conflict that seems to have no end,” he said days ago Madane’s Quintanilla. “The missing person rate is enormous. There are products that are available but at crazy prices.”added the businessman, who warned a month ago that if the conflict spreads further, “it would be easier to find the remains of Noah’s Ark than to get tires”.

“They are there, on the fourth floor of Callao, they want to stay… let them stay”they said in the relevant portfolio Claudius Moroni. According to what this medium could know, nine representatives of the union are in the Ministry of Labour, from where they affirm that 33 hearings between the unionists and the companies have taken place.

“This time the attitude in the ministry was very virulent and very aggressive. In the end they occupied the Ministry” (FATE)

“We will remain with union representation with permanent representation in the Department of Labor because that cannot be allowed.”said the secretary general of Sutna from the portfolio headquarters in Buenos Aires in Callao 100, Alexander Kresp. The union denounces that the companies and the government are trying to enforce the closure of the 2021-2022 joint ventures for workers in the sector.

A gathering of the Sutna on one of the floors
A gathering of the Sutna on one of the floors

On the origin of the conflict, Crespo specified: “The employers and the government intend to destroy parity. They want to dictatorially enforce the 2021-2022 parity closure without union approval and totally ignoring workers’ demands. Likewise, unilaterally propose an insignificant increase in parity to 38% from 2022-2023 when official forecasts for that period approach 100%, which is an unprecedented insult to workers at large and a flagrant violation of all labor laws in our country“.

Precautions

As part of the conflict, customs assured that yesterday abusive use of precautionary measures when importing tires. The agency explained that a single company introduced through 30 precautionary measures submitted to the judiciary from 2020.

“The total amount of precautionary measures requested was $156.7 million, of which only 23% were utilized. After verifying that the company was in stock on imported goods, Customs went to court to overturn the injunctions that had been granted by not examining one of the essential requirements: the risk of delay in granting the judicial benefit. These requested precautions did not meet emergencies, nor did they prevent a possible “risk of delay” as the company has court approvals doubling its historical import limits. The goal of the company is to stock goods worth the official dollar,” they explained of the organization that directs William Michael.

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