No end in sight for bus strike
The Kommunal union and the Swedish Bus and Coach Employers' Association (BuA) have failed to reach an agreement to end the strike which has brought much of Stockholm's and Umeå's bus traffic to a standstill.
The strike may be extended to several other Swedish cities on Monday.
On Wednesday, Kommunal enlisted 1,000 bus drivers from Stockholm, Umeå and Södertälje in a strike action after dismissing a proposal from mediators.
"The two parties have not been in touch over the weekend…My prediction is that the conflict will escalate this Monday," Peter Jeppsson, BuA CEO, told Swedish Radio News.
There is a chance that the strike will extend to several other towns around Sweden, including Jönköping, Gävle, Östersund, Norrköping, Bergkvara, Strängnäs, Halmstad and Västerås.
BuA believes Kommunal should take the next step.
"They were the ones who declined a proposal which the mediators felt both parties should have accepted and which we said yes to," Jeppsson said.
Lenita Grandlund of Kommunal, however, believes that the ball is in BuA's court.
She claimed that the employers have not wanted to discuss several key issues, such as bus drivers' work hours, job security terms and minimum wages.
"We are prepared to keep negotiating but then BuA must be prepared to discuss the demands that are the most important to us," Grandlund told Swedish Radio News.