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Employees of the largest British freight port start an 8-day strike

Employees of the largest British freight port start an 8-day strike

Almost 2,000 workers at the English port of Flexible, the largest maritime trade facility in the United Kingdom and which channels almost half of the country's container traffic, begin an eight-day strike this Sunday to demand better wage conditions.

Employees of the largest British freight port start an 8-day strike
Employees of the largest British freight port start an 8-day strike


This is the first forceful measure adopted by the unions in Flexible since 1989, and joins other strikes called in recent days by other sectors, such as rail or London underground transport.

 

The stoppage supported by almost 2,000 workers in this important British port will affect its operations from this Sunday until August 29.

 

The Unite union has assured that its representatives have rejected the offer of a 7% salary increase, considering it "significantly below" inflation, which rose to 10.1% in July, its highest level in more than 40 years.

 

The port of Felixstowe has indicated this Sunday in a statement that it is "disappointed" by the union's rejection of its salary offer and although it acknowledged that the strike will be an "inconvenience", it assured that "it will not be a catastrophe".

 

An "enormously profitable" port

 

After the corona virus pandemic, Felixstowe explained, the supply chain is now "used" to various disruptions: "It's the new normal." For her part, the general secretary of Unite, Sharon Graham, recalled that this port is "hugely profitable", as evidenced by the fact that "it obtained profits of 61 million pounds" (72 million Euros) in 2020.

 

"You can afford to offer workers a decent wage increase," the union leader stressed. Felixstowe, on the east coast of England, manages 4 million TEUs (a 20-foot container equivalent unit) each year and benefits from its proximity to European ports such as Le Havre (France), Antwerp (Belgium) and Rotterdam (Countries Low). Furthermore, 60% of the commercial traffic between the United Kingdom and Asia passes through its facilities. The wage earners who will go on strike include longshoremen, crane operators and other machinery.

 

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