Striking Honda China workers hold out for pay, unions | autos | Hindustan Times
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Striking Honda China workers hold out for pay, unions

autos Updated: Jun 11, 2010 09:09 IST

About 500 striking workers at a Honda Motor Co auto parts factory in southern China refused management demands to return to work on Friday, holding out for higher pay and more freedom to form unions.

Labour unions are officially forbidden in China, which has been experiencing a surge in labour unrest at foreign-owned factories as a new generation of mostly migrant workers agitates for a greater share of the country's growing wealth.

Workers at the Honda Lock factory in Zhongshan have been striking since Wednesday, the third factory suppling Japan's No.2 automaker to go on strike in the past month.

On the road outside the factory, striking workers faced off against management representatives, who using loud hailers told them to go back to work or face "serious consequences".

About 50 riot police blocked one end of the street, but the mood was largely light-hearted.

Workers at the scene said staff have been told to come to work and sign a piece of paper agreeing to a 100 yuan pay rise per month or get fired.

They had been demanding a 400 yuan per month raise for first tier workers as one of their four demands. Other demands included greater freedom to organise independent labour unions and promises from management not to lay off any of the strikers. Strikes at two other Honda parts suppliers in recent weeks have been resolved, and Honda said on Thursday it would resume building cars in the world's largest auto market on Friday.

Officials from the factory were not immediately available for comment.