SEOUL, Korea -- A labor dispute is hampering Hyundai Motor Co.'s plan to set up a joint venture with DaimlerChrysler to build trucks and buses in South Korea.
Hyundai's union is demanding guaranteed job security for employees who transfer to the venture.
"DaimlerChrysler won't be able to wait forever, although there is no deadline for the launch of the joint venture," Hyundai Motor President Kim Dong Jin says.
Kim says DaimlerChrysler had expressed concerns about Hyundai's "complicated" labor relations and asked the automaker to resolve the issue quickly.
The automakers have explored various projects after DaimlerChrysler's decision to buy a 10 percent stake in Hyundai. Hyundai had planned to form its $470 million truck-and-bus venture with DaimlerChrysler in February. The two automakers each would own half of the venture.
Kim also says the union wants to discuss Hyundai's plans to build assembly plants overseas. Hyundai is building a factory in Montgomery, Ala., which will begin production in 2005.
Separately, Hyundai is holding another round of negotiations with its union.
The automaker has had a long history of labor unrest, although company Chairman Chung Mong Koo has taken steps to ease relations.
But labor leaders may take a tough negotiating stance in the wake of the election of Korea's new president, Roh Moo-hyun.
Some political analysts believe the new president wants to avoid confrontations with Korean unions.