BC Chamber of Commerce Statement on the Tentative Agreement to End Port Strike
In response to the announced tentative agreement between the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) and the BC Maritime Employers Association (BCMEA) to end the labour action at west coast ports, Fiona Famulak, President and CEO of the BC Chamber of Commerce, released the following statement:
“On behalf of the 100 chambers of commerce and boards of trade and the 36,000 businesses that we represent, we welcome this morning’s news that the parties have reached a tentative agreement that must now be ratified by them. While details of the ratification process are not known, we look forward to a swift and successful process and the mobilization of critical port infrastructure as quickly as possible.
The prolonged strike was untenable for businesses in B.C. and across the country and, while we are optimistic the ports will soon be operational, it will take time for the backlog of goods to reach their final destination and for the associated customers to get production and fulfillment back on track. With an estimated $9.7 billion of cargo disrupted since July 1, a resumption in regular port activities cannot happen soon enough.
Concurrently, governments, labour and private sector must focus forward and work together to restore the reputation of Canada as a reliable trading nation and ensure all our ports are a reliable component of our international supply chains.
We wish to thank all the parties, including the federal government, for their efforts to bring an end to this labour dispute and encourage them to work quickly to ratify the tentative agreement.”