Disruption To Freight in Felixstowe Port
Workers at the UK’s largest port, Felixstowe will proceed with an 8 day discontinuous strike action between the 21st August and 29th August
Workers at Felixstowe, are set to take discontinuous strike action at the end of August, this year, due to being offered a below-inflation pay rise.
Felixstowe port handles around 40% of container import and exports to the UK. Therefore, this will significantly affect the UK’s supply chain.
What does discontinuous strike action mean?
This means that the strike cannot happen for a continuous 8 day period. Further clarification on what this will mean is being sought by HPUK.
For the staff that wish to continue working, “scratch gangs” will be formed by HPUK. If enough “Scratch gangs” are created the port may be able to still operate, but obviously at lower levels of productivity, causing knock on effects.
What could happen over the 8 day period?
- All operations could be closed over the 8 days. Due to different roles striking at different times, decided by the Union, this would cause major disruption to the supply chain.
- As mentioned above, if enough “scratch gangs” form, then the port may still operate, just at a slower pace, which will still cause disruption, but not as intense.
- It is hoped that the workers’ union will accept the increased pay deal, offering an additional £500 on top of a 7% pay rise and therefore, no strike action will take place.
What is likely to happen if the strike goes ahead?
- Significant UK supply chain disruption
- Impact on international trade
- From August, imports to the UK tend to surge, as retailers begin stocking for Christmas. The strike is due to collide with this container increase.
- Further strikes across the industrial sectors, including rail strikes, are also due to take place throughout the rest of the year.
We will continue to monitor the situation and continue to review internally shipments that could likely be affected, as we look to minimise the impact felt by our customers.
For further information please reach out to your account manager or operational contact