Thirteen major ports in Korea have reported disruptions to their operations, on the second full day of a nationwide strike of truck drivers.
The Ministry of Land, Transport, and Maritime Affairs said on Tuesday that almost 16 percent of over 11-thousand cargo trucks nationwide were out of commission as of 10 p.m. Monday.
The ministry added however, that the rate is significantly lower compared to the truckers' strike four years ago, when over 75 percent of the trucks were pulled off the road.
The major port of Busan saw a cut in cargo traffic by over 50 percent over a 24-hour period beginning late Sunday evening after the national strike by truckers took effect.
They are calling for a 30-percent raise in trucking fees, a cut in fuel prices and road charges and labor rights guarantees.
"We are negotiating with the government about setting a standard trucking fee to guarantee a minimum wage, but there is no penalty clause in the contract."
The land ministry is expanding rail and water transport services, adding that any illegal actions will be met with a strong response, including a cut in government fuel subsidies for six months.
The country's defense ministry also said on Tuesday that it will supply extra military vehicles and drivers to ports during the strike to help minimize disruptions to freight transportation.
The ministry said a hundred container carriers and over 2-hundred drivers will be placed at major ports, including those in Busan and Gwangyang, located in the southern part of the country.
Unionized construction workers also plan to go on strike Wednesday to demand better labor rights guarantees, including assurances that their wage payments will be made on time.
Source: Arirang News.