Patrick Terminals today applied to the Fair Work Commission (FWC) seeking to end the Maritime Union of Australia's (MUA) protected industrial action which, is "crippling" Australia's major container terminals.
With their Port Botany terminal "running three weeks behind schedule" and their Melbourne terminal running "more than a week" behind, the stevedore is looking for assistance from the FWC to terminate the industrial action immediately before the situation worsens.
Patrick lodged an application with the FWC seeking to terminate protected industrial action which, has been impacting their terminals in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Fremantle. The company is seeking an urgent hearing this week.
Patrick CEO Michael Jovicic said the MUA industrial action in pursuit of 6% annual pay rises is inflicting serious harm on the business, customers, importers, exporters and shipping lines.
"Frankly enough is enough. We have been in talks for seven months on a new enterprise agreement and the MUA have been inflicting strikes, go slows and work bans on the company for nearly a month," Mr Jovicic said.
"The union is threatening to ramp up the industrial action this week and has notified of a 24-hour strike at Port Botany on Friday."
"As a result of the MUA action there are now 40 container ships off the Australian coast waiting to come into port. We now have close to 90 thousand containers being held up and there's no end in sight." he said.
"Many of our employees have told us they don't want to be a part of the industrial action but are fearful of retribution by the MUA. This is completely understandable, but the reality is they are damaging the business and their own livelihoods," he said.
The Freight and Trade Alliance and Australian Peak Shippers Association has offered their assistance to be an 'expert witness' in supporting Patrick's claims of there being significant economic impacts to Australia because of this action.
To better understand the new enterprise agreement, detailed below is a summary of the MUA Claims for the new enterprise agreement and current pay and conditions:
The claims will add an additional $40m per annum to operational costs across the Patrick business.
Patrick has offered guaranteed pay rises of 1.5% and 2.5 % over four years.
For more information regarding the current industrial action impacting Patrick and the details for each Port, please read our update.
We will continue to monitor the landscape and provide updates where necessary.