workers occupy engineering plant in ukraine

Workers have occupied an engineering plant in Ukraine demanding payment of owed wages, nationalisation of the plant, and production of socially useful machinery.   Today at 9.30am more than 300 workers occupied the administrative building of Kherson Engineering Plant. The workers are demanding payment of wages, nationalization of the plant without compensation to its owner and have declared their intention to occupy the building until their demands are fulfilled in full.

Factory guards did not resist seriously, and no workers were hurt. A council of workers elected the previous day is in charge of the building.

On 2 February, the 300 workers at the plant started protest action against non-payment of wages since September 2008 and actual destruction of the plant by its owners. During one of the previous meetings with the workers Ms. Pugacheva, the alternate director, said that the owners were not going to save the plant. “Why do you stick to this plant so much?”, she asked.  The workers held a meeting near the entrance and elected 5 representatives, including a chair, Aleksey Nimchinov.


Reports are that the council is meeting in the former office of a technical director.  The chair of the workers council, has called for the struggle to spread and for workers from other plants throughout Ukraine to display solidarity and support each other. In the near future, workers have said, he plans to address this call to workers of the Lviv Bus Plant and other factories.

The main demands of protesting workers are:

– payment of wage arrears (near 4.5 million Ukrainian hryvnias);
– nationalization of the plant without compensation to its owner;
– the state-secured plant’s production distribution – high-quality farm machinery

Press release in English

5 thoughts on “workers occupy engineering plant in ukraine

  1. This is fantastic, the demands are spot-on. This is a textbook occupation according to this article.

    Do we know their chance of success? Have there been other occupations in Ukraine recently, or is this the first of it’s kind in the present era? Is this an autonomous action, or is a sect or Party involved? What is the likelihood of the expansion of the struggle?

    These are questions we’ve got to find out right away. As for me, my workplace is NOT occupied and I’ve got to be at work in half an hour. I’ll check this again when I get home and try to find some more materials on this.

    Exciting times.



  2. We are waiting to here from comrades in Ukraine for a fuller report but I agree it us truly fantastic – this the first genuine workers council formed in Ukraine in many years. Hopefully the action will spread in to a real fightback against the neo-liberal reforms being implemented at present against the Ukrainian working class.


  3. Dave, as far as I recall, this is the first occupation strike at least since the “orange revolution” if not since 1991. We hope it will result in a chain-reaction at other factories throughout the country.

    Activists from several left-wing organizations are actively helping striking workers and staying with them in the occupied building.


  4. Is “state-secured plant’s production distribution” a good translation?

    I am working on translating a report from the plant and it would be helpful to know.
    They mean government-secured sales of the plant’s products.


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