E German pay deal agreed

(First Edition)

MAGDEBURG (Reuter) - Wage negotiators from the engineering industry in the east German state of Saxony-Anhalt yesterday agreed on a wage deal based on a compromise in neighbouring Saxony, officials said.

Negotiators for the IG Metall trade union and the employers told reporters that they had agreed on a modified version of last Friday's deal in Saxony, which was supposed to be a pilot scheme for other states and end a two-week strike.

The union's wage commission was to meet later to approve the compromise. No details were immediately known about the agreement reached in Saxony-Anhalt, but Friday's deal will bring wages in Saxony to 80 per cent of west German levels by the end of the year. However, the deal puts back full parity with west German pay by two years until 1996.

Striking engineering workers in Saxony voted yesterday on whether to end their strike, but talks in some other east German regions were deadlocked and angry steelworkers said they planned to extend their stoppage.