The decision to remove these actions, which included stoppages and strikes, was a condition set by APM Terminals Gothenburg CEO Henrik Kristensen, upon his confirmation of a meeting with International Dockworkers' Council (IDC) and SDU on 23 February to explore an end to the current deadlock which has characterized SDU – APMT Gothenburg relations for over a year.
The upcoming meeting between SDU Local 4 President Peter Annerback and APMT Gothenburg CEO Henrik Kristensen was established by the International Dockworkers Council (IDC), to which SDU is affiliated. IDC General Coordinator, Jordi Aragunde, has been present throughout the negotiation process and will join SDU and APMT Gothenburg at the table again next week. A larger group of IDC members will also gather in Gothenburg the same day for an IDC-Europe Working Group Meeting. All present are expected to share the common goal of reaching an agreement that will end the ongoing APMT Gothenburg Dispute.
The APMT Gothenburg Dispute has, since April 2016, included a series of industrial actions coordinated by SDU, which have continued to affect the Port of Gothenburg - Scandinavia´s largest container terminal. These strikes were a response to local APMT management´s new personnel policies which adopted an anti-union stance: Dockworkers were excluded from discussions concerning terminal production; Health & Safety regulations, Collective Bargaining Agreements, and Swedish laws were brazenly disregarded. The SDU, which organizes some 85% of the dockworkers in the container terminal, is further barred at present from representing its members at ongoing talks that could affect up to one hundred dockworker jobs in the terminal.
This is not the first time SDU has been urged to pause industrial actions, having respected a request by external stakeholders in summer 2016 for a cooling off-period to allow for new talks. The previous unilateral efforts towards constructive compromise were fruitless. It should be recognized, however, that after many bitter months of conflict, SDU returns to the negotiation table in good faith, seeking a pragmatic solution in the interest of all port stakeholders.