(LEAD) Hyundai Motor suffers production losses due to truckers’ strike

(ATTN: UPDATES with details in paragraphs 2, 8-10)

SEOUL, June 09 (Yonhap) — Hyundai Motor Co. said Thursday that the ongoing strike by truckers is affecting production at its key domestic factories, which are already suffering from a global chip shortage.

About 7,200 of Cargo Truckers Solidarity’s 22,000 members have joined a general strike which began on Tuesday, the transport ministry said.

Striking truckers refused to deliver auto parts to Hyundai’s five plants in Ulsan from 2 p.m. Wednesday, causing a halt in vehicle production due to a shortage of auto components.

Hyundai produces about 6,000 units of 17 vehicle types a day at its five plants in Ulsan, an industrial city about 410 kilometers southeast of Seoul. Models include the Genesis GV80 SUV and the all-electric Hyundai IONIQ 5 model.

The company did not quantify the production losses caused by the truckers’ walkout.

Hyundai has seven domestic factories in South Korea and 11 factories overseas, four in China and one in the United States, Czech Republic, Turkey, Russia, India, Brazil and Indonesia. Their combined capacity reaches 5.65 million vehicles.

Truckers are calling on the government to extend a freight rate system intended to guarantee their basic wages in the face of soaring diesel prices.

President Yoon Suk-yeol called for dialogue to resolve the strike, but warned against violent actions that break the law.

More than a dozen union members have been taken into custody for obstructing the operation of freight trucks at sites across the country.

The Transport Ministry said the collective action did not cause major disruptions to the country’s logistics, but the volume of shipping containers entering and leaving major ports, including Incheon and Busan, fell sharply.

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