Dockworkers’ strike looms in Rotterdam port

Dockworkers strike in the Port of Rotterdam seems to be imminent after the members of the union FNV Havens voted against the offers made by their employers at a meeting held on Friday, 18 December.

On Friday, 11 December the employers and port authority left the negotiating table where discussions were being held with the unions on the financial contribution the port of Rotterdam is expected to pay to compensate the social consequences of automation and overcapacity in the container sector.

The Port of Rotterdam Authority said that the container terminal companies located on the Maasvlakte and the lashing companies have offered the unions guaranteed employment for the next 4.5 years, which the union said was unacceptable.

The union has sent an ultimatum to their counterparts and in case an agreement is not reached after the ultimatum, the unions will call for strikes as of the 1st of January 2016.

NV Havens union will resort to strikes as it aims to prevent redundancies that are likely to occur once the two fully-automated container terminals at Maasvlakte become fully operational.

According to the union, in the gloomiest scenario up to 700 jobs out of the existing 4,000 could disappear by 2017.

Union head Niek Stam is asking for all employees who were on permanent employment contract in January this year to have a guaranteed job until 2024 in addition to extension of the special policies for older workers.

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