Danish dockworkers are joining in sympathy strikes with Swedish mechanics against Tesla, threatening to create more disruptions to the electric vehicle maker’s supply lines.
The 3F Transport union in Denmark announced on Tuesday that it will start a sympathy strike in two weeks. This means that Tesla won't be able to deliver cars to Danish ports and distribute them via trucks to Sweden. Other unions in Sweden and Norway, including the postal workers delivering Tesla license plates, have also initiated sympathy strikes.
The dispute between around 130 mechanics in Sweden and Tesla has been going on for six weeks. The issue isn't necessarily about specific demands regarding pay and working conditions, but rather about the mechanics' right to engage in collective negotiation.
Elon Musk, Tesla CEO, expressed his disagreement with the idea of unions last week, calling the strike "insane."
Jan Villadsen, the Chairman of 3F, stated, "Even if you are one of the richest people in the world, you can't just make your own rules. Solidarity is the cornerstone of the trade union movement and extends across national borders."
Marie Nilsson, the head of IF Metall union seeking to represent the Tesla mechanics, warns that the entire model of Sweden’s economy is at stake if Musk refuses to engage with unions.
While the disruptions for Tesla have been small so far, since Sweden is a small market for the cars, it could become more serious if the strikes spread to Germany. Germany is home to one of Tesla's biggest factories and the largest car market in Europe.
Tesla shares traded 0.6% lower at $234.15 in premarket trading on Tuesday. They're still up 91% since the start of the year.