South Korean Petrochemical Shipments Plunge 90% as Trucker Strike Continues

The Association of Petrochemical Industry in South Korea on Monday joined the automobile and steelmakers in cutting operations as its average daily shipments plunged to 90 percent.

According to the association, its petrochemical member firms were also hit hard by mounting inventories due to the continuing strike. 

“The Cargo Truckers Solidarity union’s collective action to reject transport is spreading the damage to major petrochemical complexes in Ulsan, Yeosu, and Daesan,” the association said

As thousands of truckers strike across the country and are on their seventh day, exports fell by almost 13% in the first ten days of the month from a year earlier. 

Earlier, steelmaker POSCO said it would close some plants because of a lack of space to store unshipped products.  

Meantime, automaker Hyundai Motor has cut production at some lines, and cement makers have also cut operations. 

Previously, the government has urged truckers to return to work, promising to investigate their demands and find solutions to the issues through dialogue. 

Last week, the truckers demanded an extension of subsidies set to expire this year, which would guarantee minimum wages despite fuel price hikes, but the government said it is up to parliament to change the legislation. 

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