boss: This is an editorial for Dagbladet and expresses the newspaper’s views. Dagbladet’s political editor is responsible for the editorial.
This is madness, Elon Musk recently wrote on Twitter/X About the strike that paralyzes Tesla in Sweden. The conflict between Tesla and the IF Metall trade union revolves around Tesla’s refusal to enter into any collective agreements with any trade unions, anywhere in the world. On October 27, workers went on strike at all of Tesla’s workplaces in Sweden – in Umeå, Uppsala, Stockholm, Örebro, Norrköping, Gothenburg and Malmö. On November 3, the workshops joined, and are now refusing to repair Tesla cars. The company brought in strikebreakers to continue its operations, and more and more labor unions turned to solidarity actions. Dock workers refuse to unload cars in Malmö, Trelleborg, Södertälje and Göteborg, and the union ensures that Norway serves as a transit state for cars. Now Postnord also refuses to hand over registration plates to Tesla. Because the car giant is not allowed to collect plates directly from the authorities, Tesla filed a lawsuit against the Swedish state on Monday.
The level of conflict is sky-high. But the message from Tesla Center is harsh: no agreements will be entered into. Owner Elon Musk fears collective agreements in Sweden could spark new demands in the United States, Germany and elsewhere.
Scandinavians love their Teslas, and Tesla loves Scandinavia. For a long time, Norway was the country outside the United States with the highest number of Tesla models sold. The company’s pioneering battery technology has produced the first electric cars that can drive long distances in cold weather, and the combination of the advantages of successful Norwegian electric cars has created an industrial adventure. A much higher proportion of electric cars are sold in Sweden than in the rest of Europe, in other words, we are a key market for innovative players in the industry.
Tesla’s behavior erodes that love.
Elon Musk continues the attack On the same Norwegian model with its union crushing. Wages are determined through negotiations between parties in working life, and tripartite cooperation ensures that parties cooperate with the state to improve safety and the working environment. This is the Northern model, and it assumes freedom of organization and also a high degree of organization in practical life. The refusal of top players for their employees to reach a collective agreement is completely unheard of in Sweden, which has a stronger union movement than Norway.
In the worst case, the conflict ends with the company’s withdrawal from the country. At best, a strike changes the company, allowing workers to organize and bargain collectively. Elon Musk has downplayed the importance of the Swedes’ principles. Tesla must lose.
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