Page last updated at 21:25 GMT, Wednesday, 12 November 2008

Pay deal averts strike in Germany

Protest by IG Metall workers earlier this week
The union had initially been asking for an 8% rise

A nationwide strike by Germany's largest industrial trade union has been averted after a new 4.2% pay deal was agreed with employers.

IG Metall, whose 3.6 million members work for firms including carmakers Audi, Daimler and BMW, had initially pledged to secure an 8% rise.

However, it said it had agreed on 4.2% "given the "historically difficult situation" for Germany's economy.

Some members of IG Metall had held brief walkouts before the agreement.

The union's workers will now receive a 4.2% rise over 18 months, rising in two 2.1% steps.

Each will also get a one-off payment of 510 euros ($640; 426).

The deal was struck after 23 hours of talks.

IG Metall also represents workers in the electrical, textile, plastic, wood, and metal industries.

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