Thousands of containers blocked in Indian ports in full strike

Transport workers at three Indian ports in Chennai have gone on an indefinite strike, causing disruption to freight across the network as port operations come to a standstill.

Since July 7, industrial action has halted most import-export activities at the ports of Adani Kattupalli, Chennai and Kamarajar, while some 8,000 containers are believed to be blocked.

The strike was called after talks between container trailer owners and trade bodies failed to lead to an agreement.

Protesters demand 80% increase in fees due to rising fuel prices; more than 4,000 vehicles are taking part in the action at Indian ports.

The Trailer Owners’ Association reported that only one association, customs officials, had agreed to raise tariffs.

“There are two other associations involved in the trade, but they have not agreed to our terms,” ​​the association’s spokesperson said.

“The price of everything from liability insurance to spare parts and tire retreading has gone up. The last increase in rental charges was in 2014.

“The trailers had been in operation for 41 years now and the business had grown from just dropping off and picking up containers to and from ports to more freight stations and additional distances.”

Ships are currently calling at all three ports, threatening further congestion as containers pile up, shipping and logistics company Geodis said in a recent notice to customers.

Social negotiations in Germany have also reached a critical point as port companies now call for legal action to avert a supply chain crisis.

A new round of collective bargaining between the Ver.di trade union and the port companies of Lower Saxony, Bremen and Hamburg once again did not result in a valid offer.

Andrew B. Reiter