SEOUL, South Korea (AP) -- About 6,500 truck drivers ended their strike Thursday after transportation companies agreed to increase fees for hauling freight, but another 6,500 remained off the job, officials said.
The 13,000 unionized truck drivers had been on strike since Friday, paralyzing operations at South Korea's seaports and damaging the country's export-driven economy.
They were calling for an increase in state fuel subsidies and transportation charges, plus the introduction of a minimum wage.
On Thursday, the union decided to end the strike after a major association of transportation firms agreed to increase freight-hauling fees by 19 percent and implement a minimum wage on a trial basis next year, according to the union and the government.
Chung Hee-seon, an official at the Korean Cargo Workers' Union, said half of the striking truckers planned to be back on the job by Friday morning, but negotiations were still under way between the other workers and smaller transportation firms.
''I expect they would return to work soon, too,'' Chung said.
In a separate negotiation with government officials, union representatives agreed to not call for an increase in fuel subsidies because the government was working on other measures to fight rising oil prices, said Chung.
Earlier this week, the government said it would purchase excess cargo trucks, introduce fuel-efficient vehicles, establish a state committee on a minimum wage and allow more trucks to receive nighttime discounts on highway tolls.
The strike was an additional headache for the embattled government of President Lee Myung-bak, which has faced weeks of street rallies over its decision to resume imports of U.S. beef.
A major union federation has also threatened to go on strike next month to pressure the government to cancel the beef import deal.