Trucker strike hits Korean ports
A strike by 1,600 truck drivers in South Korea entered its fourth day Monday, disrupting container transport at ports and inland depots.
Korean news outlets gave varying reports on how damaging the strike was.
The Hankyoreh newspaper quoted officials from the Ministry of Construction and Transportation as saying transportation was running at 70 percent to 90 percent of the usual level and not seriously disrupting cargo flow.
But the Korea Herald reported that the Gwangyang Port in the southwest handled about 35 percent of its usual cargo volume Sunday afternoon and that ports in Busan and Pyeongtaek were running at less than half their normal cargo capacity.
The Busan Port Authority said it was keeping a close eye on the walkout and holding an emergency meeting today to discuss how to minimize damage from the strike.
The Korea Cargo Transport Workers Union, which says it represents 12,000 of 300,000 truck drivers, said it will continue the strike until the National Assembly adopts a bill that calls for a minimum shipping charge and a cap on brokerage fees which will ensure higher income for drivers.
Hankyoreh reported 'government officials filled the gap by mobilizing as many non-union drivers as possible. But officials are concerned that an increasing number of non-union drivers stayed away, as some of their trucks were set ablaze.'