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TRANSPORT operators are reported to be feeling the pinch of wharfie work bans at Hutchison’s Brisbane and Sydney terminals.

The Maritime Union has implemented a series of work bans, starting at 6am Thursday, following a breakdown in negotiations towards a new enterprise bargaining agreement.

A representative of one major transport operator in Sydney reported lengthy delays.

“We have felt it already,” the operator said.

“There are three to four-hour truck turnaround times which is killing us and affecting our ability to get out and service other terminals.”

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Container Transport Alliance Australia director Neil Chambers said the bans were set to be felt throughout the supply chain.

“These level of delays have a really detrimental effect on everyone, including cargo flow through the other terminals, as trucks are delayed and late, or physically can’t make it to their next job, causing significant additional costs and lost productivity across the container logistics chain,” Mr Chambers said. “We’d urge the Maritime Union and Hutchison to get back around the negotiation table and end these shift and work bans immediately.”

An attempt by Hutchison to head off the bans earlier this week failed after the Fair Work Commission ruled the Union had the right to take this form of action.

A Hutchison spokesperson told Daily Cargo News earlier this week that the company needed “a more flexible workforce to improve its economic position and keep people employed”.

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