Samsung Workers Stage First Strike in Company's History

By Madz Dizon

Jun 09, 2024 07:25 AM EDT

Samsung Workers Stage First Strike in Company's History
Samsung Electronics' union members hold placards during a rally outside the company building in Seoul on June 7, 2024, as workers at the tech giant staged the first ever strike, the head of a major union representing tens of thousands of people told AFP.
(Photo : ANTHONY WALLACE/AFP via Getty Images)

Many workers at Samsung Electronics in South Korea went on strike on Friday (June7), which is the first time such an event has occurred in the company's 55-year history.

Samsung Union Plans Strike Over Pay Dispute

Last week, the Nationwide Samsung Electronics Union (NSEU) announced that a one-day strike is planned for June 7. 

The strike comes after unsuccessful negotiations regarding pay and bonus arrangements. The NSEU represents 28,000 members, which accounts for nearly a quarter of the company's workforce in the country.

According to CNN, Samsung Electronics stated that it has been actively involved in discussions with the union and will continue to do so. They also reassured that there are no disruptions to production and business operations.

According to a statement from the company, the usage rate of paid leave on Friday was lower compared to the same day last year, which also fell between a public holiday and a weekend.

A group of approximately 10 workers staged a protest outside Samsung's main office in Seoul on Friday, voicing their demands for labor rights and chanting, "Respect labor!"

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Samsung Union Considers Offer for Transparent Bonuses

On Friday, the union expressed its willingness to consider the offer if Samsung agrees to include an extra day of annual leave and performance-based bonuses that are transparent.

Taiwan-based market research firm TrendForce assured that the strike would have no effect on Dram and Nand Flash production, and there would be no shipment shortages, South China Morning Post reported.

According to a report by TrendForce, the strike at Samsung primarily affects employees at the headquarters rather than those working on the production lines. Samsung plays a major role in the global production of high-end chips.

Finally, factories heavily rely on automated production and require very little human labor. According to the report, the strike is not expected to significantly affect the future memory supply.

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