Lines brace for further wave of port strikes across Spain

Lines brace for further wave of port strikes across Spain

Shipping lines are having to make contingency plans as a wave of port strikes loom across Spain.

Over the past weeks, labour disputes have escalated in Spanish ports as a consequence of announced government plans to reform the Spanish Ports Act and change the existing labour system in ports in accordance with European Union regulations. This has caused discontent with the stevedores’ unions, who opted for several industrial actions against the proposed law, which was presented to the parliament on February 24.

The unions have announced a strike during odd hours every second day between March 6 and 25.

Furthermore, reduced terminal productivity is noticeable at Spanish ports and the situation is expected to continue.

“These actions will cause a serious impact on cargo flows in and out of Spain and more widely to our global network, especially due to the strategic importance of the port of Algeciras as a major transhipment port for cargo moving to/out of Europe, Africa and many other destinations,” Maersk Line noted in an announcement to its client base.

Sam Chambers

Starting out with the Informa Group in 2000 in Hong Kong, Sam Chambers became editor of Maritime Asia magazine as well as East Asia Editor for the world’s oldest newspaper, Lloyd’s List. In 2005 he pursued a freelance career and wrote for a variety of titles including taking on the role of Asia Editor at Seatrade magazine and China correspondent for Supply Chain Asia. His work has also appeared in The Economist, The New York Times, The Sunday Times and The International Herald Tribune.

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