Cyprus Mail

Port workers call off industrial action after tentative deal for extra comp

By Evie Andeou

The possibility of receiving an extra €500,000 in compensation helped bring an end to the strike by employees of the licensed porter porters at Limassol, unions said on Friday.

Due to the upcoming privatisation of the services of the Limassol port, the House Communications and Works committee approved some two weeks ago, €27m in compensation for the 31 licensed porters, and €1m for their 62 employees.

The employees in their turn had demanded an extra million from the communications and works ministry, but after negotiations, it was decided to split the difference.

The 62 employees prepared a proposal, sent to minister Marios Demetriades, according to which they would agree to settle for an extra €500,000  with the €1m compensation already approved by the House committee for loss of their income due to the privatisation of the port’s services, representative of SEK union’s Limassol branch, Titos Timotheou told the Cyprus Mail.

“They are now waiting for the ministry’s response,” he said.

The employees also agreed to cancel all strike measures, including abstention from overtime work, which was announced and in force for around three weeks, general secretary of the port union workers Pantelis Stavrou said.

Timotheou said that there are also efforts underway for the government to propose the port’s private investor rehire the employees.

Union representatives said that small problems were encountered with regards to loading and unloading cargo but that the employees’ bosses stepped in and serviced the ships.

“Due to yesterday’s strike, despite the fact that we managed to service all ships, we were not able to deliver any containers inland,” Limassol port chief George Pouros said.

He added that businessmen and companies that were waiting to receive their cargo were severely inconvenienced.











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