Genoa - Luca Becce, the president of Assiterminal, is opening a dialogue with the port of Genoa’s Compagnia Unica, but he doesn’t miss an opportunity to emphasise that CULMV’s problems can only be resolved by escaping from “an ideological cage that no longer exists.” The association’s chief added, “It has been nine years that the Genoese terminal operators have been settling the dock workers’ accounts. The CULMV model must be reviewed. And I am the first to say that it must be done, with protection for all the jobs and maintaining the social peace that has lasted so long on the docks.”
President, the board of Genoa’s Port Authority will renew the authorisation for CULMV until 2019. Union leader Antonio Benvenuti said that “the dock workers are ready to face the challenge. But the terminal operators should also do their part.” Do you agree with that?
“I certainly do, but I would like to tell Benvenuti that Genoa’s operators have never taken a step backwards.”
Are you ready to provide employment forecasts that will allow CULMV to prepare a multi-year plan as the Port Authorities requests?
”If we did such a thing we would have to guarantee a minimum level employment offered by the Compagnia. It would be madness: traffic comes and goes, there can be no certainty in the long term.”
Will the terminal operators bail out CULMV’s budget in 2018, too, if need be?
”In this case, it is not a matter of allowing the dock workers to close their accounts. The point is: the Company loses money regardless of the number of days worked. And this has been happening for some time.”
”The CULMV has made an effort, but this probably isn’t enough. Perhaps it is a question of management.”
What do you suggest?
”The problem is complex. But what was done for the first time in Italy, in Livorno, with the creation of a port labour agency, could be a solution. Then there is also the talk about the use of article 16 rather than just 17 since they are the CULMV partners.”
What would it be?
”In other ports, terminal operators normally entrust certain tasks to an outsourcing company. The law that regulates labour on the docks allows for it, it’s not science fiction.”
But in Genoa there are also terminal operators who are late paying dock workers what they are owed. Do you think this is right?
”There are penalties that could be imposed on the operators. The CULMV has every right to speak up and to claim whatever they are owed.”
What is the solution that Assiterminal proposes for the port of Genoa?
”To use part of the port taxes as an incentive to retire senior workers and then to relocate those port workers who are no longer able to work on the docks. Assiterminal is preparing a letter with these and other proposals. We will talk about it with the Port Authority and with Compagnia Unica.”