The Board of International Transport Federation’s Coordination Committee in Norway unanimously agreed to declare Port of Oslo as Port of Convenience.
The Committee was authorized by ITF to make such a decision at an ITF meeting in Cape Town, South Africa, in June this year. The Norwegian ITF federations asked at the time the decision to be postponed until it was discussed with the political authorities in Oslo.
The decision was made due to several violation cases of seafarers’ collective agreements and of ILO Convention 137 in the port. As a result, representatives of the Norwegian Coordination Committee have had several meetings with representatives of the port authorities in summer and in autumn, but nothing changed, according to ITF.
“The Norwegian ITF federations ask all ITF affiliated organizations to contact their partners and ask them to stop using the port of Oslo and otherwise implement other national legal measures until the situation in Oslo is resolved,” ITF noted.
In response, Port of Oslo and the City Government in Oslo organized a dialogue meeting on 13 October, focusing on the fight of social dumping.
“I propose that we join forces on suspicion of social dumping. We want a serious working life, and all actors in the port want the same. Therefore, we must promote a good and open dialogue for preventing social dumping,” said Vice Mayor for Business Development and Public Ownership, Geir Lippestad.
The board of Port of Oslo has agreed the ILO Convention 137 to be followed, but there are room for different interpretations of the convention, noted Roger Schjerva, chairman of the Port of Oslo board.
“It is the Norwegian Governments task to explain how the convention shall be implemented in Norway… Operators in the port who do not comply with laws and regulations may risk losing their lease. We expect port operators not to engage seamen for dock work without agreement with the Norwegian Seafarers’ Union. On suspicion of social dumping, we encourage everyone to report to the The Norwegian Maritime Authority.”