Labour dispute ends at Sri Lankan port terminal

ECONOMYNEXT – South Asia Gateway Terminals (SAGT), a private container terminal  in Sri Lanka’s Port of Colombo, said it had ended a dispute with dock workers over bonus pay that had disrupted operations.
“Following 13 days of operational disruption at its berth, team SAGT made a groundbreaking deal that brought a mutually satisfactory end to the stand-off,” Erwin Haaze, SAGT chief executive, said in a statement.

The disruption caused the diversion of several vessels to the two other terminals in the port.

The company said it expects to ramp up to its usual high-productivity benchmarks within 48 hours and normalise its berthing window protocols within this week.

The company declined to comment on details leading to the resolution. But it said that, despite the initial days of stand-off, dialogue in the 24 hours prior to settlement had been “very constructive”, with all parties determined to find resolution and end the continued disruption caused to customers and the broader importer/exporter community.

"This agreement maintained the sanctity of the Collective Agreement (CA) signed just six months ago, yet enabled us to accomplish a sustainable outcome based on sensible principles of workforce engagement in a commercially responsible way” said Chandana Wijayanama, SAGT’s General Manager for Human Resources.

"There is a collective determination by all involved to ensure disruption of this nature does not recur. That is the most important achievement – to foster an environment conducive to delivering a reliable, consistent and sustainable "best in class" service level to our customers".
(COLOMBO, April 18, 2017)

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