WA union calls off port industrial action

Pre-Christmas strike for a week ends after a day following Fair Work Australia talks with State Government

December 18, 2012

Freight transport around Perth has been spared chaos before Christmas.

The Maritime Union of Australia (MUA) port strike in Western Australia has been called off after State Government assurances on mass redundancies in the event of a privatisation.

The MUA’s WA branch had held out the prospect of an eight-day and then a six-day stoppage at Fremantle and Kwinana, which, had if been borne out, would have brought the container and bulk facilities respectively to a standstill.

Fair Work Australia talks between the State Government and the union, which have been ongoing over an enterprise bargaining agreement and continued last night on this issue, appear to have been the catalyst.

The union had blamed WA Transport Minister and Treasurer Troy Buswell for the impass, which had threatened the supply of goods through the ports in the week before Christmas.

Buswell has stated that there are no port privatisation plans, but has argued the need for flexibility.

The union‘s Assistant WA State Secretary, Will Tracey, says the Government has agreed that any further privatisation-linked job-security concerns will be heard by Fair Work Australia at the first instance.

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