News & Current Affairs

September 6, 2008

US Boeing workers set to strike

US Boeing workers set to strike

Boeing worker at picket in Seattle on 3 September

The union says its members have gone without a pay rise for four years

Production at the world’s biggest aircraft manufacturer, Boeing, is to stop in the US after 27,000 workers at the company called a strike over pay.

Members of the Machinists Union, mainly based in Seattle, will down tools after last minute negotiations failed.

Boeing says it has offered more than $34,000 (£17,000) per employee in pay and benefits.

Analysts say the stoppage cause further delays in the delivery of the new Dreamliner aircraft.

The union says with that with Boeing’s record profits and its members going without a pay rise for the last four years, the offer is not good enough.

Dreamliner delays

The Machinists Union is Boeing’s biggest labour group, and the company has said it will not try to assemble aircraft during the strike.

Analysts say that the stoppage could cost Boeing at least $100m each day in lost revenues, as well as delays in the delivery of the Dreamliner aircraft.

Boeing hopes that its latest lightweight passenger jet – which is already two years late – will help it compete with rival manufacturer, Airbus.

Most of the striking workers are based around Seattle in Washington State.

Boeing is so important to the local economy that the state governor has repeatedly called on both sides to find a solution to the dispute.

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