Media: Change in Maersk Line services adversely affects port

Maersk Line’s decision to no longer call at the New Zealand port Timaru is a devastating blow to the small port and the surrounding community, writes New Zealand’s media. “We are not moving the cargo, the cargo is moving us,” says Julian Brevis, Country Manager of Maersk Line.

The consequences for the local New Zealand communities could be severe once the container giants adjust their container routes. The town and port of Timaru is a shining example of this. From September 17, Maersk Line and Hamburg Süd will no longer call at the small port, which as a consequence will lose about a third of its turnover.

The change means that the port of Timaru will lose $6 million of its yearly turnover, which is expected to affect the work opportunities for the 55 permanent employees and 30 casual laborers. Recently, a leader of Rail and Maritime Transport Union went on Radio NZ and estimated that about 50 jobs will be lost, seeing as 90 percent of the port activity is related to containers, which will no longer be entering the port of Timaru. However, it will take weeks before a plan for the future of the port and its dock workers will be ready, says a port spokesman.

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