Port workers continued to strike for a second day on Wednesday in Larnaca over a docking agreement which they say the management company has failed to implement.
Unions PEO and SEK said that the agreement they want in place is like the one at the Limassol port.
The Larnaca port managers ‘Kition Ocean Holdings Ltd’ had according to PEO struck a similar agreement with the transport ministry back in 2017.
The head of the PEO port workers union Nadia Kyritsi said that the docking and undocking should be done 50-50 with the port workers and another for the managers.
“The insistence of the company to not follow the agreement with the transport ministry, and which exists at the Limassol port for over five and half years has led us to this impasse,” she said.
She added that if the company agrees to abide by the agreement, then the port workers will begin working again.
On his part Panayiotis Panayi, the head of the SEK port workers union branch, said that they want the same agreement that has been in place in Limassol.
Meanwhile, the founder of the company Panayiotis Alexandrou said that Wednesday’s strike is illegal because the port workers law was not abided by.
“The request of Ms Kyritsis and PEO is unreasonable, illegal and should not be implemented. We recommend today to the ministry of labour and the ministry of transport to take legal measures to end this illegal strike.”
The Cyprus chamber of commerce and industry (Keve) also said that the strike was unjustified.
“This decision of the dock workers and the unions is completely unjustified, irregular and blatantly violates the Industrial Relations Code, as well as the agreement to regulate strikes in essential services. It is not possible for small groups of workers, arbitrarily and without taking into account labour institutions, to cause paralysis of vital sectors of the economy, inflicting great blows on the development of the country,” they said.
On the first day of the strike, the Employers and Industrialists Federation (OEV) condemned the work stoppage at port, saying the strike is taking place in violation of the industrial relations code.
It is for the umpteenth time that workers operate “completely outside the institutionalised procedures and labour institutions” instead choosing “the path of conflict” to try and impose their demands, the federation said.