Primark staff in Northern Ireland have voted to strike over a pay freeze.

Usdaw members employed by Primark in Northern Ireland have voted in favour of taking industrial action in protest at the company’s decision to impose a two year pay freeze.

Usdaw members voted 87.7% to 12.3% in favour of taking strike action. Usdaw representatives at Primark will meet next week to decide on the form and timing of any industrial action.

The vote was the second official ballot after technical problems put the results of the first ballot in doubt.

Usdaw claims that Primark promised not to freeze pay two years in a row during negotiations which led to a pay freeze in 2010/11.

Usdaw area organiser Nicola Scarborough said: “The overwhelming vote in favour of industrial action reflects the anger our members feel at the way Primark is treating its loyal and long-serving workforce and it underlines their determination to achieve a fair pay deal.

“We hope the company will now recognise this and return to the negotiating table with a meaningful pay offer.”

She added: “There is no question of Primark being unable to afford a decent pay rise. Sales at the company continue to increase by double digits and in the past two years Primark has made profits of £644m. It’s time for Primark to recognise the exceptional contribution its staff are making to this success.”

On Monday, Primark reported like-for-likes are expected to edge up 2% in its first half.