German steel strikes widen

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German steel strikes widen

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Steelworkers in Germany have stepped up their strike action for higher wages.

They also want those on short term contracts to get the same pay as full time employees.

Six hundred walked out at ThyssenKrupp in the western German industrial city of Duisburg.

The IG Metall union said 11,500 of its members were on strike on Thursday, up from 2,000 the day before.

One striking worker, Peter Ludwig, believes the warning strikes will get the employers to make them an offer.

He said: “I hope that this time well reach a fair compromise. I don’t really believe that we’ll get the six percent raise we’ve ask for, but since we got nothing in the way of increases in the last two years, I say now we should expect more.”

The German steel industry employers’ association has rejected the workers’ demands.

It points out that even though there has been something of an economic recovery in Germany steel production is still lower than in previous years.

Another round of talks is due to start between the union and the bosses next Wednesday.