23 Apr 2009

Ports of Auckland plans to lay off 30 staff

9:01 am on 23 April 2009

Ports of Auckland wants to lay off 30 staff as part of a major restructuring.

At present, the company's stevedoring staff is split between two terminals. It says it intends to move all staff to one terminal.

Managing director Jens Madsen says 51 staff based at the Bledisloe container terminal would be made redundant, with 29 new positions created at the Fergusson terminal.

It is a net loss of 30 staff out of 202 currently employed in the affected part of the business.

Mr Madsen says Ports of Auckland has done everything possible to minimise job losses and investigated the feasibility of a wide range of options, including the nine-day working fortnight.

Mr Madsen says a final decision is to be made in about three weeks' time.

Ports of Auckland also remains in an employment dispute with the Maritime Union, which says it will be looking very closely what the company is proposing.

Meanwhile, Port Otago has has announced a fall in its half year profits, from $18.9 million dollars to $5.4 million.

The southern port says earnings from port operations held up well, but a harsh downward valuation of its property arm caused the overall decline.

The company also says talks to achieve a merger with Lyttelton Port Company are continuing, but no details can be given.