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Tensions Continue at DaimlerChrysler German Plant

Workers at carmaker DaimlerChrysler's Sindelfingen plant in Germany went on strike early this morning as negotiations continued between the company's management and workers council over working hours and wages. DaimlerChrysler, the world's fifth-biggest carmaker, is threatening to relocate 6,000 jobs from Mercedes plants in southern Germany unless labor unions agree to €500 million ($619 million) in cost reductions. The works council, which represents employees at the Mercedes factories, has offered to forgo a 2.79 percent wage increase scheduled for 2006. But it has refused to accept the €500 million cuts in wages. "We aren't going to let ourselves be blackmailed," said Berthold Huber, chairman of labor union IG Metall. Thomas Fröhlich, spokesman for DaimlerChrysler said, "There are still controversial issues where big differences remain."

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