Israel Seaport Shut When Workers Stage Slowdown

Marinelink.com
Monday, February 24, 2014

(Reuters) - Israel's Haifa seaport, one of the country's main trade arteries, has been shut indefinitely after management told employees involved in a work slowdown to stay home.


Since last week, workers at the port on Israel's northern Mediterranean coast have been operating cranes that load and unload 11 to 13 containers an hour - well below its normal 30 containers an hour, a spokesman at the port said.
"The port will not reopen until we get a strong declaration from the union that workers will work at full force," he said on Monday, the first day of the closure.


He said ships were either going to Israel's other main port in Ashdod further south or stopping in Cyprus, Greece and Italy and eventually make their way to Israel.


The port's 1,100 unionised workers were angered last week when management decided to cancel overtime pay and special "fun days", prompting what the spokesman called an "Italian strike".


"It led management no choice but to do something never done at the ports in Israel. We did not let any more ships enter the port and told workers not to come to work," the spokesman said.


A spokesman for the Histadrut labour federation had no immediate comment on the situation.


Haifa port is Israel's largest for containers, with about 5,000 containers loaded and unloaded each day.


The spokesman said negotiations with workers will probably start in the next few days.


He noted that the port lost financially strapped Zim - Israel's main shipping company and the world's 17th largest line - which moved to the Greek port of Piraeus to save money.


The loss of 20-30 million shekels from Zim led management to try and cut costs. Zim, the spokesman said, offered to come back to Haifa if its fees were lowered but workers were opposed to reductions in their extra salaries.


Zim last month reached a restructuring deal with most of its creditors that will see part of its $3 billion in debt swapped for shares.

(Reporting by Steven Scheer)

Maritime Reporter October 2014 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

Ports

Fednav Celebrates Anniversary Trio in Cleveland

Fednav Limited held a reception on board one of its vessels, the Federal Mayumi, at the Port of Cleveland yesterday to celebrate a trio of anniversaries: the 70th

WRRDA: Clearing the Channel for P3 Projects

A Creative Combination for Financing Inland Waterways Infrastructure Earlier this year, the U.S. maritime industry in general, and the inland waterways industry in particular,

BMT Supports Samalaju Port Development

BMT subsidiaries in the Asia-Pacific region have been awarded a contract to provide design expertise for an advanced bulk-material handling system for the emerging port of Samalaju in East Malaysia.

People in the News

EU: Ships Will Measure CO2 Emissions

Shippers to begin monitoring from 2018; Environmental groups say law is weak, shippers favorable. The shipping sector will for the first time have to monitor

Matson Raises 2015 Westbound Hawaii Box Rates

Matson, Inc., a U.S. carrier in the Pacific, announced that Matson Navigation Company, Inc. (Matson) will raise its rates for the company's Hawaii service by $225

Melbourne Box Pot Lining Up Bidders

Three of Australia's largest infrastructure funds plan to bid for the country's largest container terminal in a sale expected to fetch about A$5 billion ($4.27 billion) for Victoria state,

Government Update

WRRDA: Clearing the Channel for P3 Projects

A Creative Combination for Financing Inland Waterways Infrastructure Earlier this year, the U.S. maritime industry in general, and the inland waterways industry in particular,

EU: Ships Will Measure CO2 Emissions

Shippers to begin monitoring from 2018; Environmental groups say law is weak, shippers favorable. The shipping sector will for the first time have to monitor

Melbourne Box Pot Lining Up Bidders

Three of Australia's largest infrastructure funds plan to bid for the country's largest container terminal in a sale expected to fetch about A$5 billion ($4.27 billion) for Victoria state,

 
 
Maritime Contracts Maritime Standards Naval Architecture Navigation Offshore Oil Pipelines Ship Electronics Ship Repair Ship Simulators Sonar
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | terms and conditions | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.0841 sec (12 req/sec)