Yesterday the Federation of Chemical Workers of Hungary (VDSZ) held a demonstration against Hankook Tire Hungary Ltd. and what it views as the tyre maker’s harassment of union officials at its plant in Rácalmás. The VDSZ called upon other unions and workers to display solidarity by attending the protest.
Last week, five members of the CGT union, employed at Goodyear’s Amiens Nord factory in France, were briefly taken into custody for incidents dating as far back as 2008. Head of CGT representation at the plant, Mickael Wamen, plus Sébastien Lupo, Christian Hareux, Reynald Jurek and Franck Jurek were imprisoned on 26 March and released 38 hours later. Their time in custody was linked to a complaint filed by one of France’s trade union confederations, the CFE-CGC, six years ago. The complaint was dismissed at the time but later reopened. The five men are accused of acts of violence, vandalism and making death threats.
This week’s agreement between Goodyear Dunlop Tires France and the CGT union over the tyre maker’s Amiens Nord factory removes the major obstacle that blocked Titan International’s acquisition of the Amiens Nord agricultural tyre business. After hearing that the two parties have buried the hatchet, Titan CEO and chairman Maurice Taylor indicated he’s once again prepared to do business.
French Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault and Minister of Industrial Renewal Arnaud Montebourg have welcomed the end of the long-term standoff over Goodyear’s Amiens Nord factory. In a statement issued on 22 January, Montebourg expresses confidence that the signing of a deal between Goodyear management and representatives of the CGT (Confédération générale du travail or General Confederation of Labour) union will end the plant’s occupation and seven years of tension.
The lawsuit brought against Goodyear Tire & Rubber by the Works Council at the company’s Amiens Nord factory in France and the factory’s union representative, Michael Wamen, has been dismissed by the United States District Court in Ohio. Referring to a host of precedent cases, Judge Sara Lioi determined that Goodyear neither breached agreements made with the Amiens plant workers nor did it fraudulently represent reductions in plant output as temporary measures.
Apollo Tyres’ planned takeover of Cooper Tire appears to be in serious jeopardy as the latest court proceedings reveal the depth mistrust between the two companies. Cooper’s suggestion that Apollo has “buyer’s remorse” and is using the industrial dispute at Cooper Chengshan as a way of sabotaging the deal is the clearest example of this yet. The question of whether or not Apollo is putting everything it can into closing the deal is at the centre of the case. Apollo says it is doing everything it can despite the Chengshan and USW issues. Cooper says these are being used as delay tactics.