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Strikes Causing Disruption at Ikonion Container Terminal, Piraeus, Greece - 14/10/09
The following loss prevention circular is to advise the Club and Members that strikes at Piraeus port, Greece are causing disruption to trade. 
Piraeus port authority workers have been on strike for 13 days in protest over a deal by which Chinese shipping company COSCO was last year awarded a 35-year management concession for two of the three terminals at Ikonion Container Terminal.  The agreement entered into force on 1 October and the rolling strikes commenced the same day. Today workers announced that strikes would continue until 18 October, however if there is no resolution of the dispute by that date it is likely that the strikes will continue.
As part of its election campaign the Greek government, newly elected on 4 October, had promised workers it would review the legality of the deal with COSCO.  Last Friday, 9 October, the court affirmed the validity of the contract, but despite this workers have continued their strike action. In an attempt to now end the protest the government has reportedly invited dockworkers to discussions with COSCO over the management of the terminals.
The strikes involving around 1,500 local port authority workers have caused a standstill at Ikonion Container Terminal, with a backlog now of around 6,000 containers and congestion of vessels.  Many vessels are now choosing to divert to other Greek ports. Even once the strikes cease it will be some days before the backlog of cargo is cleared and services resume as usual at the port.

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