Underground strike set to cause travel woes at Barcelona mobile event

Employees of Barcelona's underground train network are planning a walkout this week, in a strike action set to coincide with the world's largest telecommunications event.

Underground staff will strike on Monday and Wednesday amid a dispute about short-term contracts and pay. Unions announced the decision on Sunday, after the collapse of renewed negotiations.

The announcement comes one day before the launch of the 2016 Mobile World Congress, which is expected to attract almost 100,000 participants to the Spanish city during a four-day period.

The Catalan capital constructed a new underground line, which opened ahead of the event, to take visitors from the airport directly to the venue.

But on the days of the strike, services across the city will be running at 50 per cent during peak times and at just 30 per cent at other times.

City Mayor Ada Colau was unable to strike a deal with unions, who are demanding that 600 short-term employees be given permanent contracts. They also consider the 1-per-cent pay rise offered to workers in 2016 insufficient.

Last update: Sun, 21/02/2016 - 13:53

More from Europe

British government to table Brexit bill after losing court appeal

The British government said it will table a "straightforward bill" allowing parliament to vote on triggering formal...

Ex-EU Parliament chief Schulz to challenge Merkel in German elections

Former EU Parliament president Martin Schulz is set to lead Germany's Social Democrats (SPD) into battle against...

EP Foreign Affairs Committee warns of rising tensions in W. Balkans

Members of the Committee on Foreign Affairs on Tuesday expressed concern over rising tensions and incendiary...

Gabriel set to become German foreign minister

Social Democrat chief Sigmar Gabriel is set to become Germany's foreign minister after deciding against standing as...

Gabriel proposes Schulz as the centre-left SPD's challenger to Merkel

German Social Democrat (SPD) chief Sigmar Gabriel said Tuesday he will not lead his centre-left party's challenge to...