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Containers at Puerto Madryn. Container ships may now resume fish product shipments to Europe. (Photo: Appm.com.ar)

Union lifts blockade on fish exports

  (ARGENTINA, 7/19/2010)
Container ships from various shipping companies will now be able to resume shipments of fish products from Patagonia to the European market following the agreement reached between the  Maritime Workers Union (SOMU), the Argentine Fisheries Subsecretariat and the Argentine Chamber of Fishing Vessel and Freezer Vessel Owners (CAPECA).
 
The SOMU general secretary, Omar Suárez, the Undersecretary of Fisheries, Norberto Yauhar, and two managers from CAPECA, Guillermo Jacob and Enrique Díaz, agreed on Friday to rescind the strike which kept frozen fish exports in Patagonia for 10 days. 
 
The staff on board the ships and trawlers should now get "better pay," said SOMU in a press release. 
 
The Fisheries Secretariat will gather all of the parties in a meeting which will be held this Wednesday, to advance the final settlement. 
 
Suárez said he hoped that the rest of the sector and entrepreneurial fleets involved in the industry will "imitate this action" and reach a wage agreement. 
 
Before achieving the agreement, it emerged that the Argentine Patagonia Chamber of Fisheries Industries (CAPIP) planned to use the Federal Court to order the release of Rawson exports and to punish the union. 
 
In this regard, Suárez said: "If they want to denounce that they denounced, they have not done it yet, because we have not been notified. We are all within the rights of the law, but now I don't know if you can say the same about them." 
 
"Firstly we ask that you pay the wage increase that we're asking for of around 25 per cent, and secondly, we want a collective bargaining agreement which is applicable to the times that we live in, and thirdly, we are going to require that the judge asks them to bring the balances for the past 10 years, the wage books that the boats must have, to argue against their claim of why they lose so much money," said the general secretary of SOMU, reports Tiempo Sur
 
The union also said last week that they did not prevent the departure of cargo: "We want to express that we are not exerting any direct action, no trade organization has ever attempted and never will attempt to stop Argentine exports. On the contrary, we are safeguarding the rights of Argentine workers in the fishing industry which are being violated by the business sector." 
 
Related article: 
 
 
 
By Analia Murias
[email protected]
www.fis.com 


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