(MENAFN - AFP) Unions and employers have reached a tentative deal to end a mass truckers strike in South Africa, with the agreement due to be signed later on Friday, officials said.
"The parties have signed an undertaking that they agree to a three-year industry wage agreement which is to be signed at approximately 10:00 am (0800 GMT)," said Margrieta Brown-Engelbrecht, the executive officer of the industry body, The Road Freight Employers Association (RFEA).
She said details of the agreement would be released after it is signed.
A spokesman for the main South African Transport & Allied Workers' Union (SATAWU), Vincent Masoga, confirmed that the tentative deal had been struck overnight.
"Our leadership are busy talking to the provinces and various leaders and the members in the sector," he said.
"There is a possibility of the strike ending Friday," he said.
The strike by thousands of truckers, now in its third week, has hit deliveries of goods from cash for ATMs to fuel across the country, while scores of trucks have been torched and drivers intimidated.
The strike took a deadly turn when assistant truck driver Gary Stewart died in a Cape Town hospital Monday, after he was hit in the back of the head by a stone hurled -- allegedly by strikers -- last week.
The drivers were demanding a 12-percent wage increase for 2013 and 2014, more than the rate of inflation which stands at five percent.
They had previously rejected the employers' wage increase offer of eight percent.
The signing of the deal is expected to halt one sympathy strike by rail and port workers planned for next week.