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7 Aug 2019


Railway workers quit en masse after wildcat strike in central Georgia

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07 August 2019

Sixty railway construction workers at an international company in Georgia’s central Shida Kartli region have left their job after unsuccessfully demanding a raise.

The walkout followed a brief unsanctioned strike the previous day.

The workers in Khashuri Municipality left the job following failed negotiations with their employer, China Railway 23rd Bureau Group. 

The employees were working on the construction of a railway tunnel in the village of Kvishkheti. The tunnel is part of the east-west railway line modernisation project launched by Georgia in 2010.

Gia Mchedlishvili, a 55-year-old explosive demolition specialist, told OC Media that the company ‘offered no compromise on salaries’ during negotiations on 6 August, after which ‘all 60 workers’ decided to leave...

Several workers complained to the union on 5 August that they did not have copies of their employment contracts and that there was no interpreter to communicate with the company’s management. 

In their statement, the 23rd Bureau insisted that the workers’ daily wage, which ‘also includes bonuses and the overtime pay’, was ‘much higher’ than the employees had asked for. 

They also claimed to have offered the workers several options for salary raise schemes but that no agreement was reached.

The company did not specify further...