Soft drinks bosses stick to current wage offer

AMALGAMATED Beverage Industries stands firm on its current wage offer to employees, the company, currently hit by industrial action, said yesterday.

AMALGAMATED Beverage Industries stands firm on its current wage offer to employees, the company, currently hit by industrial action, said yesterday.

"The offer made by management will not change," said ABI managing director John Ustas ahead of the resumption of wage negotiations today.

ABI management and representatives of the Food Allied Workers' Union (Fawu) were set to meet at the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration to try to resolve an impasse in negotiations which had seen just under 1000 workers on strike since December.

"We are firm in our belief that our offer is both very fair and reasonable," said Ustas.

Fawu is calling for a 9,5percent wage increase, while ABI had made a wage and benefits offer of 8,3percent.

ABI's offer included an across-the-board wage offer of 7,8percent, bringing the minimum wage to R7235.

The package would also include an increase of the education grant from R275 to R350 and a Christmas voucher doubled to R400.

The cellphone allowance would be increased and a work week would be defined as a 45-hour period with Saturday work considered as overtime.

Fawu had requested that all agreements with labour brokers be nullified and that a moratorium be placed on the appointment of owner-drivers.

An owner-driver was a person who undertook road transport work using their own vehicle and work skills.

ABI's spokeswoman Robyn Chalmers said the use of labour brokers was legal - Sapa

X