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Media Centre  |  COSATU Press Statements

COSATU backs ACSA strikers

27 October 2003

The Congress of South African Trade Unions is giving its full support to the members of the SA Transport and Allied Workers Union (SATAWU) employed by the Airports Company of South Africa (ACSA), who have today begun a strike in support of their demand for a wage increase of 10% across the board and a minimum monthly wage of R3300.

COSATU agrees with SATAWU that the company's offer of a 7.5% increase, with a minimum of R3225, is unacceptable, in the light of the huge profits ACSA has made since 1999, as a result of the increases in the number of aircraft landing, up from 187 423 to 217 827 since 1999, and the number of departing passengers, up from 9 514 to 11 078 in the same period.

This has led to rises of 19% in revenue, 28% in operating profits, 32% in headline earnings and 34% in operating cash flow. COSATU endorses SATAWU's view that their members "have made a valuable contribution to ACSA's enviable financial position". Reve nue per employee has increased by 83%, and operating income per employee by 98%.

In the light of these figures, the demand for a 10% increase is absolutely reasonable and the union is right to reject the company's offer. ACSA should follow the example of South African Airways [SAA] and SAA Technical, who have agreed to wage increas es of 10% and 12% respectively for 2003.

COSATU calls on all its members in the aviation and related sectors to show solidarity with the ACSA strikers and give whatever practical help they can. This strike is in support of policies adopted by the 8th National Congress, for quality jobs and a living wage and therefore deserves the support of all workers and progressive organisations.

Patrick Craven
Acting COSATU Spokesperson