Lock-out at the Port: the Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal calls for an agreement Saturday
Montréal, July 22, 2010 – The Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal applauds the federal government’s initiative to bring together the two parties involved in the labour conflict at the Port of Montréal before the Canada Industrial Relations Board on Saturday morning. This initiative by Minister of Labour Lisa Raitt is in response to repeated demands in the business community to act quickly to begin conflict resolution.
“We applaud the federal government’s efforts at mediation and encourage both parties to seize this opportunity to break the impasse,” said Michel Leblanc, president and CEO of the Board of Trade. “Closing the port raises justifiable concerns about the impact on the economies of Montréal, Quebec and Canada, at the beginnings of what is still a fragile recovery.”
The Port of Montréal is a critical piece of infrastructure. Twenty million tons of merchandise of all sorts moves through the port every year, generating economic benefits of close to two billion dollars. “We couldn’t do without this major industrial intermodal link for very long without suffering the consequences,” Michel Leblanc said. “Whether for the import of raw materials, the export of heavy equipment or the transit of rare or perishable goods, many sectors of the economy are directly affected by port activity. Without access to the port, plenty of companies will suffer losses.”
“The Port of Montréal is an essential economic player for the city and for Quebec,” Michel Leblanc said. “It makes the city a leading platform for North American and international trade, as well as a major and highly strategic logistics centre for the transport of merchandise. This is why we encourage Minister Raitt to force a return to work on Monday and the resumption of regular activities at the port should negotiations fail on Saturday.”
The Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal is made up of some 7,000 members. Its mission is to represent the interests of the business community of Greater Montréal and to provide individuals, merchants, and local businesses of all sizes with a variety of specialized services to help them achieve their full potential in terms of innovation, productivity, and competitiveness. The Board of Trade is Quebec's leading private economic development organization.
Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal
Tel.: 514 871-4000, ext. 4047