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Iceland strike over

Published by FiskerForum, 18-02-2017 · info@fiskerforum.dk

After a high-pressure couple of days as the stakes were ratcheted up, Iceland’s Seamen’s Unions have been in intensive talks with the owner’s federation SFS and an agreement was reached late last night. The agreements hinge on being accepted by union memberships that have already voted down two agreements, but this time the deal is expected to be accepted, and the fleet should be back at sea tomorrow.

The expectation is that the fleet will be back at sea tomorrow after the new agreements between owners and unions were signed by representatives of both sides following talks that had dragged on far into the early hours of this morning.

The boost to the capelin quota from 57,000 tonnes to 299,000 tonnes a few days ago appears to have added an urgency to negotiations. This change meant that a great deal of value was at stake and with a short deadline as the capelin has to be caught within the next few weeks to secure the valuable roe season.

According to reports from Iceland, the long-running dispute had increasingly focused on minor issues as the negotiations had progressed, and it had become more and more likely that the government’s appetite for allowing the two sides to reach an agreement without being prompted was becoming thin.

The veiled threat was that legislation would be used to outlaw the strike within the coming days if no agreement were to be reached this weekend.

The agreement remains to be voted on by the union memberships who have already voted down two rounds of agreements between unions and owners. This time there is a real confidence that the memberships will accept the new deal and the fleet will be back at sea by Sunday.

Source: Various

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