Hundreds of port
workers at the Port of Liverpool, one of the UK’s largest container ports, will
strike over pay and working conditions.
More than 500 dockworkers voted for strike action after being offered a 7% pay increase by MDHC
Container Services, part of Peel Ports, the second largest port group in the
UK. The Unite union said the offer was inadequate and far below the current
real inflation rate, which the Bank of England estimates could reach 13% this
“The strikes, the dates of which have not yet been set, will bring
Liverpool container port, one of the largest in the country, grinding to a
halt,” the Unite trade union said.
The move comes as the
industry braces for an eight-day strike at the country’s largest container
port, Felixstowe, scheduled to run later this month, threatening to
disrupt UK trade and put further pressure on the supply chain. Around 1,900
workers at Felixstowe will down tools on August 21.
Commenting on the
ramifications for European liner calls with the potential twin strikes in the
UK, Lars Jensen, CEO of liner consultancy Vespucci Maritime, suggested via
LinkedIn: “With such large strikes carriers are likely to have to offload
UK-bound cargo in major hubs such as Antwerp and Rotterdam and as a consequence
further worsen existing congestion problems on the continent as well.”
The likely UK disruption comes at a time where
European ports were just beginning to see a reduction in the logjam that has
plagued ports for months.