Business & Economy News Poland

Amazon to create 1,000 jobs in Poland as German employees go on strike

Amazon is due to create 1,000 new jobs in Poland

Warsaw, Poland – U.S. tech giant Amazon announced it would be opening a new logistics centre in Poland that would create 1,000 new jobs within a year of its opening, local media reported.

Amazon to open new logistics centre in south-western Poland

The new Amazon warehouse should be located in Okmiany, in the south-western part of the country near the Czech and German borders, roughly 100 km from the city of Wroclaw. The company hasn’t revealed the exact date of the opening of the new logistics center, the seventh to be launched since Amazon started operating in Poland in 2014, but said that the 1,000 new jobs should be created in the coming 18 months.

According to Amazon, the American tech giant owned by the world’s richest man Jeff Bezos has created more than 14,000 jobs on the local market in the past five years.

The new jobs will offer “a competitive salary of 20 zlotys (around 4.7 euros) per hour gross”, according to the company statement released earlier this week.

Amazon crippled by nation-wide strike in Germany on ‘Prime Day’ sales

The announcement came as seven Amazon factories and logistics centres went on strike in neighbouring Germany, to demand better working conditions and higher wages, to mark the so-called ‘Prime Day’ – mass online sales and promotions on Monday and Tuesday.

A total of 2,000 German employees went on strike to ramp up pressure on the U.S. tech giant in their long-standing dispute over workers’ pay and conditions, rallying under the banner: “No more discounts on our incomes”.

“While Amazon continues lowering its prices for large bargain hunts, its own employees are deprived of a living wage”, said Orhan Akman, spokesperson for the Verdi trade union that initiated the strike.

It’s estimated that Amazon employs around 13,000 people in Germany, its second largest market in the world after the U.S.

Amazon facing increasing pressure in Europe over working conditions

Although attempting to present itself as a ‘responsible employer’, Amazon has long been criticized for offering insufficient pay to its workers despite record-high profits last year. In 2018, around 50 strikes were coordinated in several EU countries. In April, Amazon trade union representatives from over a dozen countries met in Berlin to coordinate their efforts and increase pressure on the company’s management.

Last May, Amazon trade union in Poland had also threatened to go on strike to demand better working conditions, asking for the direction to nearly double employees’ pay (which stands at around 18 zlotys per hour for low-level positions).

“Amazon has created more than 14,000 good jobs in Poland with very attractive pay on top of industry-leading benefits and skills training opportunities – all in a modern, comfortable and safe working environment”, Amazon answered in a statement at the time.

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