Greek seamen end strike after reaching deal on wage increase

Workers get first pay raise in eight years
|labour-reporter.com|Last Updated: 09/06/2018
Labour strike
A seaman holds a rope next to a moored passenger ferry during a second consecutive 24-hour strike of Greece's seamen's federation PNO against austerity policies affecting their sector, at the port of Piraeus, Greece, on Sept. 4. REUTERS/Costas Baltas

ATHENS, Sept 4 (Reuters) — Greek seamen on Tuesday called off a strike that had kept ferries and passengers stranded in ports around the country, after reaching a deal with employers on a wage increase.

The strike — which started at on Monday — was led by the PNO seamen’s federation and other unions including dockers and merchant marine engineers.

The PNO had initially planned to continue the strike to Wednesday but said it would end it after reaching an agreement with employers on a two per cent pay raise this year, its members’ first increase for eight years.

The walkout forced many holidaymakers to seek alternative ways of traveling in a country where tourism is a pivotal industry for an economy which is slowly emerging from a debt crisis.

After eight years of austerity prescribed by Greece’s international lenders, its euro zone partners and the International Monetary Fund, the left-led government has pledged to reverse unpopular labour reforms and raise wages.

Marine unions have strongly resisted wage cuts prescribed by the country’s international lenders and reforms liberalizing the shipping sector.

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