15 February 2021
For immediate release
Shipping Australia condemns latest waterfront strike action
Victoria International Container Terminal, in the Port of Melbourne, has revealed that it will shortly
be subject to extensive industrial action. Shipping Australia CEO Melwyn Noronha comments:
“We would like to express our sympathy for ordinary families, for importers and exporters and for
the trucking and logistics industries. All of these Australians are already suffering because of the
pandemic and the associated economic crisis.
“Strikes at Australia’s major container terminals serious adversely affect ordinary Australian
families. Remember, early last year, people were literally physically fighting in supermarkets over a
perceived shortage of toilet paper.
“Our importers and exporters will likely face increased difficulties and delay because of strikes and
work bans. They may also face increased costs as they try to arrange workarounds to cope with the
strike by, for example, arranging for their shipments to be re-routed. Meanwhile, our logistics
industries – which accounts for about 10% of the Australian workforce – will be adversely affected
too. Then there’s the adverse affect on our farmers’ ability to sell their products overseas in an
effort to recover from years of drought, the recent bushfires and COVID.
“At a time when global and national economies are reeling, at a time when Australians have been
forced out of work, at a time when many people are struggling to find the money to keep a roof
over their head and food on their plate, it is contemptible that the union is – again – trying to
cripple the Australian economy and the ability of Australians to earn a living. And for what? For
their own selfish interests.
“The shipping industry will also be gravely impacted too, in the form of delays and costs. This will
seriously affect schedules and services.
“It really is time for the Federal Government to recognise the vital importance of the international
container trade. Shipping Australia calls for the Federal Government to intervene and to protect
Australians from this reckless strike action”.
Notes for journalists and editors:
For additional information contact Jim Wilson, Policy and Communications Officer on 0411 395 524.
Shipping Australia is a peak national shipping association comprising 29 member shipping lines and
ships’ agents, who are involved with over 70 per cent of Australia’s container and car trade. Our
members are also involved with over 60 per cent of our break bulk and bulk trades along with
significant cruise ship and tug operations. Our members employ about 3,00