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Turkey’s Labor Dispute Affects Ford’s Production

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Published on : May 21, 2015

With the ongoing labor dispute in Turkey, Ford’s Turkish manufacturing facility has been hit. Ford Otosan, a joint venture between the company and Turkey’s Koc Holding, mentioned that due to supply problems, production has been temporary stalled at its plants located at Yenikoy and Golcuk in northwestern part of the country. Earlier this week, production at Tofas and Oyak Renault, which contributes above 40% of annual vehicle production in Turkey, was stalled due to the workers demanding for better work conditions. Oyak Renault, a joint venture between Turkish army pension fund and France’s Renault, runs the largest car factory in the country. Tofas, owned by Italy’s Fiat and Koc, has mentioned that though the ongoing dispute has affected production, it will not affect sales.

According to the workers, the dispute started with union Turk Metal negotiating a 60% wage hike for workers at a manufacturing facility run by Bosch Fren but failed to secure such deals at other manufacturing plants. The dispute started initially at Oyak Renault’s factory and then later, workers across the other plants started demanding a pay rise. The Automotive Manufacturers Association has asked the workers to stop the protests as continued protest would lead to job cuts. With the parliamentary election due next month, the labor dispute is affecting the ruling AK Party which built its image on strong economic management. Deputy Prime Minister Ali Babacan mentioned that the government is watching the developments carefully and is trying to work out solutions after talking to all sides. 

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