Increasing Threat Of Labour Issues May Impact Ocean Freight

June 19, 2024

 

There is an increasing threat of labour strikes in North America and Europe that is being seen as a potential hurdle for ocean freight services during the coming weeks.

We have already highlighted the threat of an upcoming rail strike in Canada in a recent post, and a rail strike would impact the significant amount of traffic that moves to and from Canada and the Northern US by ocean freight.

As things currently stand that threat of a strike has increased. The Canada Industrial Relations Board (CIRB) have now taken submissions from major unions that represent over 9,000 workers, and are due to make a decision soon on whether a strike will be allowed to go ahead. 

Problems are also brewing on the US East Coast, where the International Longshoremen Association (ILA), which represents 85,000 port workers, is currently facing-off with port employers over a new labour contract and has suspended negotiations.

Negotiations have currently broken down due to a dispute over automation, but the union is mainly campaigning for substantial wage increases for its members. A strike could paralyse operations for 36 ports on the East and Gulf Coasts, between Maine and Texas.

In Germany, labour unions have threatened a series of port strikes at the country’s key ports, including Bremerhaven, Hamburg, Bremen and Emden, after talks with the Central Association of German Seaport Operators ended without success.

A warning strike has already disrupted activities in German ports on Monday as negotiations continue this week over port workers hourly rates.

Meanwhile, French unions have recently engaged in several one-day strikes and four-hour work stoppages in protest over the government’s pension reforms. However, upcoming strikes for 21st and 25th June have now been postponed until September following President Macron’s surprise call for a snap election.

The team at Killick Martin are monitoring developments closely.

 

Other News

Logistics Impacted By Major IT Outage

Logistics Impacted By Major IT Outage

  A major IT outage, which has today affected many banks, media outlets, airlines, the NHS and other major institutions, has led to some disruption in logistics today. Flights have been grounded at some international airports, some airlines have had to stop...

read more
Canadian Rail Strike Continues To Loom

Canadian Rail Strike Continues To Loom

  The threat of a potential rail strike in Canada continues, as a three day walk out on the West Coast is avoided this week by being ruled unlawful. This week’s planned walk out in British Columbia is a different dispute from the ongoing national threat and was...

read more
Cargo Ship Sinks Following Houthi Attack

Cargo Ship Sinks Following Houthi Attack

  A bulk cargo ship has sunk in the Red Sea, a few days after being stuck by a Houthi Uncrewed Surface Vessel (USV), with one crew member understood to have been killed. The Greek owned vessel MV Tutor is understood to have been enroute from Russia to Egypt when...

read more
Suez Struggles As Panama Canal Is Returning To Normal

Suez Struggles As Panama Canal Is Returning To Normal

  After more than a year of restrictions caused by an el-nino induced drought, the Panama Canal will be returning to near normal operations by the middle of July, while the same cannot be said about the Suez Canal. The Panama Canal Authority (PCA) have announced...

read more

Follow us on social media

Air Freight Services

Contracts with all major airlines and our own consolidation services.

View More

Ocean Freight Solutions

Flexible FCL and LCL solutions with all major carriers and alliances.

View More

European Road Freight

Pan European services for economy, express, full load, and intermodal.

View More

Customs

A one-stop shop brokerage service for all of your customs requirements.

View More