CRUISE lines have started cancelling visits to Tasmania amid industrial action taken by TasPorts’ marine pilots.
On Sunday (28 January) TasPorts confirmed the cruise ship Azamara Journey, which was scheduled to call Hobart on 2 February, had cancelled its visit and would proceed to Sydney.
Disney Wonder also cancelled its visit to Hobart. The ship was originally due at the port on Sunday (28 January).
TasPorts pilots, represented by the Australian Maritime Officers Union, have been escalating their protected industrial action since the first work bans took effect on 19 January.
It comes as enterprise agreement negotiations continue between the ports corporation and the AMOU. The union has previously told DCN the pilots are seeking nationally competitive salaries. TasPorts has said it is offering pilots a 12% salary increase over three years.
TasPorts corporation warned this past week that the work stoppages and bans would have consequences for cargo, cruise and Antarctic shipping.
TasPorts CEO Anthony Donald on Sunday said he was “deeply disappointed” for passengers and the state’s small businesses which benefited from cruise ship stopovers.
Azamara Journey and Disney Wonder would have brought 700 passengers (plus 400 crew) and 2000 passengers (plus 900 crew), respectively, to the state.
“We had enquired if [Azamara Journey] could shorten its port call to depart Friday evening, however, the line has decided to proceed directly to Sydney,” he said.
“This is a terrible blow for Tasmania’s small businesses which are supported by cruise ship passengers and crew during their visits.”
Mr Donald said TasPorts respects the right for marine pilots to take industrial action, but called on the AMOU to return to the negotiating table “so that safe and reliable port operations can continue”.
As per the list of work bans and work stoppages approved by the Fair Work Commission, the pilots’ stoppages and bans have exemptions for emergencies.