Johannesburg - The Shoprite Group has reinstated 3 000 striking workers in Zambia after firing them earlier in the week, it said on Friday.
Spokeswoman Sarita van Wyk said the move followed "pressure" from the Zambian government who said the minimum wage for the shopworkers’ sector was not applicable to Shoprite as a foreign investor.
"The government said Shoprite should, in fact, be paying much higher wages in line with those of civil servants," she said.
"Shoprite's management will return to the negotiation table in an effort to find a solution for the wage dispute."
The workers, who were striking for higher wages, were dismissed on Tuesday after they "ignored" the retailer's second ultimatum to return to work.
Van Wyk said the Shoprite Group CEO would meet Zambian officials to "clarify the position of foreign investors in that country".
Reuters reported that the Zambian government told Shoprite it would revoke the company's trading licence if it went ahead with the dismissals. - Sapa