27 Jul 2004

Strike at New Caledonia's main port

2:26 pm on 27 July 2004

A strike at Nouméa's main wharf has stopped the offloading of cargo into New Caledonia.

The strike called by the STKE union began on Saturday when dockers employed by the Manutrans company began blocking all access to the wharf.

The Nouvelles Caledoniennes newspaper reports that among the cargo held back are 210 containers of essential items, including food and dairy products from New Zealand.

The situation is poised to worsen with the scheduled arrival of two more container ships later this week.

The secretary general of the STKE, Claude Wema, says the union called the blockade because of perceived threats to the jobs at Manutrans.

Mr Wema said the strike was open-ended.