STORY: With fuel costs soaring, the truckers are calling on the government to make permanent a minimum-pay system known as the 'Safe Freight Rate' that is due to expire by the end of the year, and to expand benefits for truckers in other industries, including oil tankers.
The government has said it will extend the scheme for three years but rejected other union demands. In June, an eight-day, non-violent strike by truckers delayed cargo shipments across Asia's fourth-largest economy, costing more than $1.2 billion in lost output and unmet deliveries before it ended with each side claiming it won concessions.
The organizing union kicked off 16 rallies across the country on Thursday morning, including at a port in Ulsan that houses Hyundai Motor's main manufacturing plant. The union estimated some 22,000 took part in the rallies, while the transport ministry said about 9,600 people attended, and there were no clashes with police monitoring events.