Shapps is warned plan to ban ferry operators that underpay staff won’t work

By Lisa James
Home » Shapps is warned plan to ban ferry operators that underpay staff won’t work

The British Ports Association (BPA) has said plans to ban ferry companies paying unfair wages from British ports would be ‘unworkable’.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps told the Commons on Wednesday: “I want to see British ports refusing access to ferry companies who don’t pay a fair wage, as soon as practical.”

His announcement was made in response the firing of 800 P&O Ferries employees earlier this month, who were replaced by staff on much lower wages.

Mr Shapps said he wanted ‘minimum wage corridors’ to be created between the UK and its major trading nations as part of an overhaul of international maritime law.

But BPA Chief Executive Richard Ballantyne warned: “The expectation that port authorities will need to enforce minimum wage rules in the shipping sector could be unworkable.”

Meanwhile, P&O Ferries’ Pride of Hull is preparing to resume sailings to and from Rotterdam early next week.

The ferry is docked in Rotterdam after sailing from Hull last week following the sacking of the company’s 800 staff.

P&O Ferries said it is expected to restart its nightly crossing between Hull and Rotterdam on 4 April.

Its sister ship, Pride of Rotterdam, began sailing again on Saturday, operating the same route.

According to the Local Democracy Reporting Service, MCA officers carried out the inspection on the Pride of Hull on 22 March, the BBC reports.

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