Tesla in Sweden: No production but a lot of sales.
Tesla does not produce any vehicles in Sweden, but operates several facilities where cars are maintained. So far this year, the Tesla Model Y is the best-selling new car in Sweden, with more than 14,000 registrations as of October, according to Mobility Switzerland, an industry group.
At the beginning of the mechanics’ strike, a Tesla representative told Swedish media that the company followed the country’s labor laws and had chosen not to sign a collective agreement. The company said it will do its best to continue its business.
Quote: “It is important and clear that we help.”
“It is important and clear that we help defend the collective agreement and the Swedish labor market model,” the Swedish Transport Workers Union, whose members work on Swedish docks, said in a statement.
How it started: Tesla mechanics went on strike on October 27.
In late October, IF Metall, which represents 300,000 workers in Sweden, including some Tesla mechanics, said talks with company representatives had ended without reaching a resolution. The union began the strike at Tesla’s 12 service centers on October 27.
Dockers initially refused to unload any Tesla cars at four major Swedish ports starting on November 7, which expanded on Friday to… 55 ports.
Unions representing janitors also refused to service Tesla facilities, and the Postal Workers Union stopped any deliveries from arriving at the company’s sites.
Both IF Metall and the Transportation Workers Union acknowledged that Tesla has found ways to overcome strikes. They said Tesla appears to be using other mechanics to operate its facilities and bring new cars to Sweden by truck.
Swedish media reported that strike efforts were also hampered by some union members who work at Tesla and refused to join it.
What other unions say: Germans expressed their support.
In Germany, where Tesla produces the Model Y at a massive factory outside Berlin, union leaders are seeking to organize the nearly 11,500 employees who work there. Tesla’s leadership has not dealt with the German autoworkers’ union, IG Metall. Last month, several hundred workers wore union stickers calling for “safe and fair work.”
Dirk Schulz, regional head of IG Metall in Brandenburg, where the Tesla factory is located, expressed solidarity with striking workers in Sweden. Schulz said in a statement that the strike in Sweden gave workers in Germany “the courage and confidence to organize themselves into a union and take their fate into their own hands.”
The Federation did not announce any other measures.
What happens next: More strikes are planned in Sweden.
This week, IF Metall said 50 of its members at Hydro Extrusions, a company that produces aluminum components for Tesla, will leave their jobs next Friday.
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