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‘You can’t just make your own rules’: Tesla faces Scandi revolt as Danes join Swedish strike

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Tesla faces a growing revolt in Scandinavia after Danish dockworkers joined a sympathy strike with Swedish mechanics, heaping pressure on the electric vehicle giant to grant collective bargaining rights to employees.

Members of Swedish trade union IF Metall have been at loggerheads with Tesla for six weeks, and have garnered support via secondary strike action from fellow workers across a range of industries in Sweden, including postal workers, painters, dockworkers and electricians.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk bemoaned the blockage of license plate deliveries by postal workers as “insane” and late last month filed lawsuits against both the Swedish Transport Agency and the postal service.

After Swedish dockworkers blocked the reception of Tesla cars into the country, there had been speculation that Tesla would seek to deliver cars to Danish ports and transport them by truck across to Sweden.

However, IF Metall requested support from Denmark’s largest trade union, which on Tuesday announced a sympathy strike.

Jan Villadsen, the the chair of Denmark’s 3F Transport union, said Tuesday that IF Metall and Swedish workers are “fighting an incredibly important battle” and therefore have his union’s full support.

“Just like companies, the trade union movement is global in the fight to protect workers. With the sympathy strike, we are now stepping in to put further pressure on Tesla,” Villadsen said in a statement.

“Of course, we hope that they come to the negotiating table as soon as possible and sign a collective agreement.”

In what appeared to be a direct attack on Musk, Villadsen added that “even if you are one of the richest in the world, you can’t just make your own rules.”