Russian Workers End Strike At Ford Plant

Assembly line workers at the plant near St. Petersburg currently make about $800 a month; Ford has offered an 11 percent raise beginning in March.

ST. PETERSBURG, Russia (AP) — Russian employees at the Ford Motor Co. assembly plant near St. Petersburg went back to work Monday after a nearly month long strike, officials said.
 
The union and the company agreed last week to continue negotiations on wage and hours demands.
 
''It's neither a failure nor a victory for either side. It's just a new stage in the struggle for our interests,'' said Alexei Etmanov, head of the union that is seeking wage increases of more than 30 percent and a reduction of the night shift to 6.5 hours.
 
Assembly line workers currently make about 19,000 rubles ($800) a month. Ford has offered an 11 percent raise beginning in March.
 
The plant, in Vsevolozhsk, produced about 60,000 cars last year, mainly the Focus model.
 
''We are very pleased with the decision by the trade union that will allow all employees to get back to work,'' plant director Theo Streit said in a statement.
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