Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search


Unions say Lyttelton should be in local ownership

Wednesday 8 March 2006

Rail and Maritime Transport Union (RMTU) Maritime Union of New Zealand (MUNZ)

Port Unions say Port of Lyttelton should be held in local ownership

The two Unions representing port workers in New Zealand have come out against a proposed deal that would see the Port of Lyttelton pass into effective control of multinational corporate Hutchison.

The Rail and Maritime Transport Union (RMTU) and the Maritime Union of New Zealand (MUNZ) are working together to promote local control of the port.

Rail and Maritime Transport Union General Secretary Wayne Butson says the sell-off means a vital piece of New Zealand infrastructure will be effectively going into overseas control, with serious repercussions for the New Zealand economy.

"The potential is there for the port to be completely privatised some time down the track."

He says the deal is short-sighted, and will further place New Zealand's export trade outside New Zealand control.

"The consolidation of ports and shippers into a few overseas operators could see importers and exporters faced with price hikes."

Maritime Union of New Zealand General Secretary Trevor Hanson says the takeover by multinational Hutchison has the potential to destabilize the maritime industry in New Zealand.

"Hutchison could use their international clout to provide business advantages for Lyttelton that other ports don't have."

He says this could mean the closure of other South Island ports, with a devastating effect on jobs and the revenues that currently benefit local communities through local ownership of ports.

Mr Hanson says there is the threat of casual, short-term overseas labour being introduced to the port once New Zealand signs up to the free trade deal with China.

"We are extremely concerned that a global operator like this, based in Hong Kong, will find a way to introduce overseas labour through the free trade agreements."

The Unions say their concerns are widespread in the wider maritime industry.

The two Unions are proposing that the Christchurch City Council through its business arm CCHL purchase the Port of Lyttelton outright.

This would keep ownership, control and revenue with the local community and the people of New Zealand.


© Scoop Media

Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines


Half A Billion Accounts: Yahoo Confirms Huge Data Breach

The account information may have included names, email addresses, telephone numbers, dates of birth, hashed passwords (the vast majority with bcrypt) and, in some cases, encrypted or unencrypted security questions and answers. More>>

Rural Branches: Westpac To Close 19 Branches, ANZ Looks At 7

Westpac confirms it will close nineteen branches across the country; ANZ closes its Ngaruawahia branch and is consulting on plans to close six more branches; The bank workers union says many of its members are nervous about their futures and asking ... More>>

Interest Rates: RBNZ's Wheeler Keeps OCR At 2%

Reserve Bank governor Graeme Wheeler kept the official cash rate at 2 percent and said more easing will be needed to get inflation back within the target band. More>>


Half Full: Fonterra Raises Forecast Payout As Global Supply Shrinks

Fonterra Cooperative Group, the dairy processor which will announce annual earnings tomorrow, hiked its forecast payout to farmers by 50 cents per kilogram of milk solids as global supply continues to decline, helping prop up dairy prices. More>>



Meat Trade: Silver Fern Farms Gets Green Light For Shanghai Maling Deal

The government has given the green light for China's Shanghai Maling Aquarius to acquire half of Silver Fern Farms, New Zealand's biggest meat company, with ministers satisfied it will deliver "substantial and identifiable benefit". More>>


Get More From Scoop

Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news