An eight-day strike by South African car
workers has ended with an agreement on pay.
The Automobile Manufacturers Employers
Organisation (Ameo) and the metal workers union, Numsa, signed a new wage
agreement on Friday.
The three-year deal will see workers
getting a 10% increase this year, and 9% rises during the next two years.
Numsa was asking for a 15% increase,
more than three times the country’s rate of inflation.
Ameo, whose members include local
franchise-holders of Toyota and Volkswagen, said the strike had been highly
damaging and had stopped production of some 17,000 vehicles, a loss that it
said would be difficult to recover.
A statement from Ameo said longer term
effects could also be serious: “The strike and resultant loss of volume
has caused significant reputational damage to the automobile manufacturing
industry in South Africa as a stable production location and this could have
repercussions in terms of our ability to attract future investments going
The industry produces more than 400,000
vehicles a year, most of which is exported to neighbouring African states.
It claims to account for up to 7% of
South Africa’s gross domestic product (GDP).