U.S. Port Strike: ILA, USMX Reach Tentative Agreement

by Ship & Bunker News Team
Friday February 1, 2013

The International Longshoremen's Association (ILA) and United States Maritime Alliance (USMX) have reached a "tentative agreement" over a new six-year Master Contract for U.S. East and Gulf Coast dock workers, Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service (FMCS) Director George H. Cohen said in a statement issued this evening.

The agreement is still subject to the ratification procedures of both parties, as well as to local union negotiations, however, "those local negotiations are ongoing and will continue without interruption to any port operation."

ILA and USMX did not immediately release a statement or provide any further information on the matter, although USMX reiterated on its website that the tentative agreement will prevent any disruption of port operations.

ILA had threatened to strike after the February 6, 2013 "container cliff" talks deadline expired.

"Again, collective bargaining has proven its worth by avoiding a potential work stoppage that would have had a severe negative impact on the nation's economy," said Cohen.

No additional information was given, and FMCS said it would not be releasing any details of the proposed deal.