IF Metall Aims to Tighten Grip on Tesla, Targeting Halt to Giga Berlin

Key Points

  • 🇸🇪 IF Metall, a Swedish union, intensifies efforts against Tesla to sign a collective agreement.
  • 🏭 Tesla’s Gigafactory Berlin is the focus of IF Metall’s latest escalation to disrupt vehicle production.
  • ⚙️ IF Metall aims to stop production at Hydro Extrusions Vetlanda, a Swedish company supplying aluminum profiles crucial for Tesla Model Y’s crash safety.
  • 🚗 Tesla argues it provides equivalent or better agreements than collective bargaining and remains resistant to signing.
  • 🔄 Tesla may consider using Chinese aluminum profiles from Giga Shanghai’s supplier/s if the blockade persists.
  • 📧 For news tips, readers can contact the author at simon@teslarati.com.

Swedish union IF Metall is escalating its efforts against Tesla in an apparent attempt to push the electric vehicle maker to sign a collective agreement. As per recent reports, IF Metall, as part of its latest efforts against the EV maker, has set its sights on Tesla’s largest manufacturing facility in Europe, Gigafactory Berlin. 

The anti-Tesla strike in Sweden has been ongoing for several weeks now, and things have been escalating. But despite sympathy strikes from several groups and IF Metall’s increasingly aggressive efforts, Tesla has remained steadfast in the notion that it will not sign a collective agreement. Tesla Sweden, for its part, has argued that it already offers “equivalent or better agreements than those covered by collective bargaining.”

As part of its latest efforts to push the EV maker to sign a collective agreement, IF Metall has stated that it would aim to stop Gigafactory Berlin. This is because a Swedish company that makes aluminum profiles for the Model Ys produced at Giga Berlin has become involved in a sympathy strike and blockade. 

IF Metall strike general Veli-Pekka Säikkälä noted that the goal is to seriously disrupt Tesla’s vehicle production. “There will be serious disruptions in production, and that is of course the aim… Without that detail, you cannot deliver the car. So it is very noticeable,” the union official stated. 

As noted in a CarUp report, Hydro Extrusions Vetlanda produces aluminum profiles that are used in Tesla’s vehicles that are produced in Giga Berlin. The profiles are key components for the crash safety of the Model Y, so without them, the production of the all-electric crossover would most likely be halted. Incidentally, the Tesla Model Y also became Sweden’s best-selling car model this year. 

“There is a very high risk that there will be serious disruptions in production, and that is, of course, the purpose for us to get Tesla to sign a collective agreement,” Veli-Pekka Säikkälä said. 

It remains to be seen how Tesla would respond to the union’s most recent escalation. As per veteran journalist Anders Nyman, however, the union’s efforts against Giga Berlin may end up resulting in Tesla building Model Ys at the facility with aluminum profiles from Giga Shanghai’s supplier/s.

“The same car (Model Y) is manufactured in Tesla’s factory in Shanghai, and there is no indication that the Swedish company is a subcontractor there as well. The result will therefore be that Tesla will instead build the cars in Berlin with Chinese aluminum profiles, and that the aversion to the Swedish unions is cemented. Blackmail is not the right method of doing business with Elon Musk,” Nyman wrote in a post on X.

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