ILWU, PMA Contract Talks Continue

Image: International Longshore and Warehouse Union.
Pacific Maritime Association.

Talks continue between the International Longshore and Warehouse Union and the Pacific Maritime Association, who jointly said Feb. 23 that they “remain hopeful of reaching a deal soon.” 

Both sides have been negotiating since May 10 for a new agreement that covers over 22,000 dockworkers at 29 ports along the U.S. West Coast. While representatives agreed not to publicly talk about negotiations, both sides emphasized that ports on the West Coast continue to operate.

“The parties have reached a tentative agreement on certain key issues, including health benefits, and remain committed to resolving remaining issues as expeditiously as possible,” according to the union and maritime association. “Talks are continuing on an ongoing basis until an agreement is reached.”

The announcement comes as many West Coast seaports have been seeing more of their market share heading to the East and Gulf Coasts in recent months. Shippers who were concerned about any delays at West Coast ports in case negotiations sour made the shift as a precaution. 

By Karen Robes Meeks