Brazil's Embraer says strike blocking 'critical operations'
SAO PAULO (Reuters) - Brazilian planemaker Embraer SA EMBR3.SA said on Saturday that a strike that began this week stopped it from delivering planes, processing bills and conducting other "critical operations" after union workers blocked factory doors.
A metalworkers union in the city of Sao Jose dos Campos, which is just east of Sao Paulo, where Embraer is based, declared an indefinite strike late on Wednesday, blocking access to the company's biggest factory to demand a 10 percent wage hike.
Embraer said in a statement on Saturday that it has made the workers a final offer of a 7.4 percent raise.
The union earlier this week had said that the offer of a 7.4 percent raise was not sufficient.
Inflation in Brazil is running at about 6.5 percent annually.
"The practice of blocking people's access at the workplace has impacted critical operations of the company, such as delivery of airplanes," Embraer said. "The potential damage not only negatively affects the company, but its customers, suppliers and employees."
The statement said that in the event of an impasse in negotiations, the dispute could go to labor courts.
Chief Executive Frederico Curado told analysts on Thursday that Embraer has "some slack" in its production so far this year to hit 2014 delivery targets even if the strike continues for "a few days."
(Reporting by Brad Haynes and Brian Winter; Editing by Leslie Adler)
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