'Keep Talking' Retailers Urge Gulf Port Contract Negotiators

Press Release
Tuesday, July 17, 2012

The National Retail Federation urges labor & management officials at the US East and Gulf Coast ports to continue contract negotiations

The National Retail Federation wishes to avoid any potential supply chain disruption, delay or stoppage, which could stifle global commerce and jeopardize the fragile U.S. economic recovery.

“We urge you to quickly agree on a framework for a new contract and commit yourselves to having a contract ratified well before the current contract’s September 30 expiration date”

“Any kind of disruption at the ports would not only add costly delays to our members’ supply chains and other industries relying on East and Gulf Coast maritime facilities, but potentially further threaten the fragile economic recovery as we enter the peak [holiday] shipping season,” NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay wrote in a letter to the parties involved.

“It is important to note that even the perceived risk of a disruption has already forced retailers and other shippers to reevaluate their use of East and Gulf Coast ports.”

Shay’s remarks were contained in a letter to the International Longshoremen’s Association, which represents the dock workers, and United States Maritime Alliance, Ltd., which represents the terminal operators. The two sides have held contract negotiations over the past few months with another round scheduled for July 18-21.

The text of the letter is available here.
 


 

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