APM Terminals estimates it will take 7-10 days for operations to return to normal now striking stevedores are back at work at APMT’s general cargo terminal at Peru’s Port of Callao.
The three-week-long strike, which ended on 5 June with a tentative two-year agreement, had been most damaging to grain and fertiliser imports, according to APMT.
It claimed truck drivers responsible for hauling shipments from the terminal had stopped entering the port because of “harassment and intimidation” by striking workers.
“Shortages of those goods were impacting the economy there, but drivers are coming to the port again,” Ruud van der Wel, head of labour relations for APMT, told IHS Maritime on 10 June.
“There is still some backlog, so service to some of the vessels has been delayed,” he added.
The dispute was mainly over the use of an electronic roster system that APMT sought to implement as part of the latest round of collective bargaining negotiations with SUTRAMPORPC, the local dockworkers’ union.
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APMT maintained that the new system, which will replaces a manual one, allows the port to improve stevedore deployment based on vessel arrivals and work plans, thereby increasing terminal productivity.
The new system is also a better way to fight drug trafficking at the port, Van der Wel said.
“The assumption is that [smugglers] must be in the port at certain times in order to hide drugs or put them into containers. With the new system, we at least know who is working when and where in the port, which can be useful information for law enforcement.”
Van der Wel also noted that 130 dockworkers who had been fired in late May for testing positive for drugs and for other reasons were allowed to return to work on the condition that disciplinary letters be placed in their personnel files