Tesla Launches Legal Battle In Sweden Amidst Ongoing Union Dispute [Update]

Tesla has filed a lawsuit against the Swedish Transport Agency and the state-owned postal service, PostNord. The automaker seeks to collect registration plates directly for its new vehicles, accusing the Swedish state of discriminatory practices.

The dispute arises from a broader conflict with Swedish unions, particularly IF Metall, which is demanding Tesla sign a collective bargaining agreement for its Service employees. The conflict has led to strikes, blockades, and sympathy actions across various sectors, impacting Tesla’s operations in the Scandinavian country.

One of the more damaging job actions taken against Tesla was the blocking of license plate deliveries, effectively making it impossible for new owners to register their cars. In response Tesla filed a lawsuit demanding the Swedish Transport Agency’s cooperation. The company argues that the refusal to release license plates constitutes an unlawful and unique attack on its operations in Sweden. Tesla further claims a constitutional obligation for the agency to provide license plates directly to vehicle owners. (via Associated Press)

UPDATE 9:15am PT: A Swedish court has already sided with Tesla. The Transport Agency has seven days to comply and provide license plates to Tesla, or they will face a fine of 1 million kroner (C$128,000/US$93,000).

The legal battle is not limited to the transport agency, as Tesla also suued PostNord, urging the court to order the release of all parcels addressed to the company. The electric car manufacturer labels PostNord’s actions as a targeted and unlawful attack, asserting that the refusal to deliver license plates hampers its operations and affects a significant number of consumers who have ordered new cars.

Swedish unions, including postal workers and dockworkers, have joined forces to support IF Metall’s demands for a collective bargaining agreement. Elon Musk has expressed his frustration on social media, calling the situation “insane.” 

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