The motor manufacturing industry could be hit by a potential strike after wage negotiations hit a snag, and further problems were caused by the miscalculation of the inflation rate.

The motor manufacturing industry could be hit by a potential strike after wage negotiations hit a snag, and further problems were caused by the miscalculation of the inflation rate.

It was announced last month that Statistics South Africa had miscalculated the CPIX (consumer price index) by 0,6 per cent last year. According to , National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) spokesperson Dumisa Ntuli said employers demanded the union pay back the 0,6 per cent extra wages that were erroneously given to workers as a result of the miscalculation.

“The employers argue strongly that workers were overpaid last year by several million rand,” said Ntuli.

Numsa and the Automobile Manufacturers Employers Organisation (Ameo) are currently in wage negotiations which continue on Friday. Numsa said that in terms of the three-year wage agreement Ameo was supposed to confirm the May CPIX of 7,7 per cent plus a one per cent improvement factor. Ntuil said this meant the wage increase across the board should be 8,7 per cent, but Ameo was offering an 8,1 per cent increase. This is after the 0,6 per cent error has been deducted.

Ntuli said that if the employers continued to insist on the 8,1 per cent increase, the union would declare a dispute and prepare for a potential strike in two weeks’ time.

Ameo spokesman Dave Kirby told that it was not taking any money back from employees. “That has never been proposed. But we have to deal with this issue in some presentable way. We are still involved in negotiations and hope to have it settled by today,” he said.

Original article from Car