Unionized Korean Air Pilots Go on Strike

Unionized pilots at Korean Air, South Korea's largest carrier and one of the world's largest cargo airlines, went on strike to demand higher wages despite a government threat to use special powers to halt the walkout.

Two government ministries issued a joint statement before the strike, warning of "strong measures" if the pilots walked out.

According to a Korean Air estimate, about 70 percent of the carrier's operations would have to be suspended during a strike.


Electronics Makers Fined for Fixing Prices

The French competition regulator fined consumer-electronics makers Royal Philips Electronics, Sony and Panasonic a total of $40 million for fixing retail prices of their televisions and DVDs. Philips and Sony were fined almost $19 million each, and Panasonic, a unit of Matsushita Electric Industrial, was fined close to $3 million, the Conseil de la Concurrence said in a statement.


Auto Plant to End Production of Volgas

Russia's Gorky Auto Plant, or GAZ, is to wind down production of its famed Volga, a hefty sedan once favored by Soviet apparatchiks, in the face of tough competition from Western and Asian automakers. Aluminum tycoon Oleg Deripaska, who controls the plant, said production of the car would cease. "So far it is unfortunately hard to say which car will replace it," he said.

In an interview with the Associated Press, Pyotr Zolotaryov, the general director of Russkiye Mashiny, which controls Deripaska's auto assets, said production would wind down gradually over five years as the group focuses on its truck- and van-building business in preparation for a possible initial public offering in 2007.

Compiled from staff and news service reports.