Tesla Sues Sweden as Strikes and Labor Disputes Block New Car Deliveries

Several Swedish unions are backing Tesla workers who want a collective wage agreement.

Around 130 Tesla mechanics, from ten different repair facilities throughout Sweden, have been on strike since October 27. Tesla is refusing to sign the workers’ collective wage agreement, despite such agreements being the backbone of Swedish labor. Since more than 90 percent of Swedish workers are part of various collective wage agreements, several different unions are standing in solidarity with the striking Tesla workers, including the state postal service, which is refusing to deliver license plates for new Teslas, according to Barron’s.

Postnord, which is owned by Sweden and Denmark, is the only postal service that’s allowed to deliver government material, such as license plates. Since the postal service workers won’t deliver license plates to new Teslas, the electric vehicle maker can’t deliver new cars. It isn’t only postal workers that are refusing services to Tesla in solidarity, either. Electricians and even dock workers are said to be refusing work for Tesla, according to Bloomberg. New Teslas aren’t even being unloaded at Swedish docks.

Elon Musk naturally isn’t happy. In retaliation, Tesla’s owner and CEO is suing both Postnord and the Swedish Transport Ministry (STM) in an attempt to get plates delivered to its Tesla’s vehicles, after publicly called the labor strike “insane” on Twitter. Musk’s lawsuit seems to have worked, as the courts ruled that the postal service needs to get license plates to new Teslas within seven days, per Reuters. It’s unclear what will happen with the other workers and unions that are refusing to work with Tesla, but the court might side with the automaker again, since it already did once.

Despite the striking and subsequent court order, Tesla apparently isn’t any closer to a collective wage agreement. Swedish publication Dagens Industri reported that there is no deal currently on the table between Tesla and the union, and that Musk himself has directed the company’s local subsidiary not to negotiate.

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