Media Release – 14 November 2022

Svitzer Australia Advises Lockout of Harbour Towage Crews

Today, Svitzer Australia announced that it has given notice of a lockout to all harbour towage operations and employees covered under its 2016 National Towage Enterprise Agreement and their union bargaining representatives. The lockout will take place from 12pm, Friday 18 November (AEDT), indefinitely.

The lock out will impact 17 metropolitan and regional Australian ports nationwide.

The step was taken in response to industrial action which has made it difficult for Svitzer to run its operations.

There is significant disruption and ongoing uncertainty about the availability and reliability of our workforce and the ability to deliver services. This is harming our ability to reliably, safely and efficiently serve our shipping customers and port operations nationally.  

Svitzer has been notified of more than 1100 instances of protected industrial action since October 2020. It has received more than 250 instances of protected industrial action since 20 October 2022 alone, amounting to nearly 2000 hours of work stoppages.

The maritime unions are the Australian Maritime Officers Union (AMOU), the Australian Institute of Marine and Power Engineers (AIMPE) and the Maritime Union of Australia (MUA).

For more information please read the full announcement below.