International transport strike postponed to start on 6 April 2018 at 6.00 at the earliest

Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment 20.3.2018 1.38 | Published in English on 20.3.2018 at 15.37
News item

Mediation in the labour dispute concerning international transport has yet again been unproductive. The Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment has decided to postpone the work stoppage announced for 23 March 2018 by two weeks.

The work stoppage announced by the Finnish Ships’ Officers’ Union to start on 23 March 2018 at 6.00 will be postponed by two weeks. Minister of Labour Jari Lindström decided on the postponement on the basis of a proposal of National Conciliator Minna Helle. The work stoppage could start on 6 April 2018 at 6.00 at the earliest.

As the work stoppage is postponed, the associated sympathy strikes will be cancelled. The Finnish Ships’ Officers’ Union had announced a sympathy strike at icebreakers to start on 23 March 2018 at 7.00.

Mediation in the labour dispute between the Finnish Ships’ Officers’ Union and the Finnish Shipowners’ Association will be continued next week. The time will be announced later.

The situation is dire

National Conciliator Minna Helle has already issued one proposal for a settlement, which the Finnish Ships’ Officers’ Union rejected on 16 March 2018. Mediation was continued on Monday 19 March 2018 at 10.00, but no settlement was reached. Helle says the situation is still dire, although some progress has been made in the mediation.

The most important points of contention are still unresolved. They are related to the pay and working-time demands presented by the Finnish Ships’ Officers’ Union.

Conditions for postponing a work stoppage

The Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment may, under section 8 of the Act on Mediation in Labour Disputes, postpone a work stoppage by two weeks at the most if the work stoppage is considered, in the light of its scope or the nature of the sector involved, to affect essential functions of society or prejudice the general interest to a considerable extent. Another requirement is that more time is needed for mediation.