ILWU, PMA hope to reach West Coast contract deal ‘soon’
West Coast longshore workers and their marine terminal employers on Thursday said negotiations on a new contract are continuing and the two sides “remain hopeful of reaching a deal soon.”
While largely repeating prior talking points, the joint statement from the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) and Pacific Maritime Association (PMA) was notable given the rare communication from the two sides amid negotiations that are now approaching 10 months. And it comes just days before the start of the Journal of Commerce’s TPM23 conference in Long Beach, where many key stakeholders from container shipping around the globe are due to gather.
The statement also comes amid growing frustration among US importers and West Coast ports that more than nine months of talks have yet to produce a deal. The lack of a contract has spurred some shippers to reroute discretionary cargo away from the US West Coast in order to avoid any disruptions linked to the ongoing negotiations. Data from PIERS, a Journal of Commerce sister company within S&P Global, shows that the West Coast’s market share of US imports from Asia fell to 58.8 percent last year, from 61.5 percent in 2021. That resulted in share gains for the East and Gulf coasts.
Source: Journal of Commerce
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