There were 33 strikes in NL last year, but fewer days were lost to stoppages

Empty shelves at an AH supermarket in Leiden. Photo: Brandon Hartley
Empty shelves at an AH supermarket in Leiden. Photo: Brandon Hartley

Dutch workers went on strike 33 times last year, up 11 on the 2021 total, but fewer people were involved, national statistics agency CBS said on Wednesday.

In total, 39,000 days were lost to strikes in 2022, compared with 59,000 in 2021. The 2022 total was the highest since 1988, when there were 38 official strikes.

The transport and logistics sector had more strikes – 13 – than any other, and was hit by 23,000 lost working days.

Most strikes were down to a combination of factors, with just eight due purely to wage demands, the CBS said.


The 2022 total may well be topped by 2023. In March, trade union federation FNV said there had been 24 stoppages in the first three months of the year as workers called for wage rises to offset soaring inflation.

These included bin collectors’ strikes in major cities, walkouts by bus and train drivers and hospital care being reduced to a weekend rota. Staff at companies including Etos, the Bijenkorf department store chain, PostNL and Douwe Egberts also staged walkouts and there was the first strike in ING history.

Albert Heijn distribution centre staff are currently on strike and the FNV itself has also now been hit. Its own staff walked out this week after rejecting two pay offers.

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