Portugal: Stevedores Strikes at Portuguese Ports from 9 March until 6 July 2020

March 2020

Updated May 2020

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Club Correspondents Pinto Basto have updated their advice reported in their original message below.

They report a new strike pre-notice until 08h00 on 6 July 2020. This is how it will affect ports of Lisbon and Setúbal, but it is basically an extension of the present stevedores’ strike already in force.


Expected incidences for the port of Lisbon:

On all discharge or loading operations in any shift – normal working day or on overtime – whenever terminal operators hire or use port labourers who were not employed within union’s labour force on 4 February 2020.


Expected incidences for the port of Setúbal:

Refusal to provide work on ships and/or cargoes that, in this context of strike, are or have been diverted from the port of Lisbon to Setúbal.


Pinto Basto original report of strike:

Club correspondents Pinto Basto have advised as follows:


Expected incidences for the port of Setúbal:

  • Refusal to provide work on ships or cargo that, in the context of this strike, are or have been diverted from the port of Lisbon, and also with, refusal to provide services any and all overtime work on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, at the Tersado and Setefrete stevedoring companies during the period listed above
  • Abstaining from the provision of work between 10 am and 11 am, from 3 pm to 4 pm hours and from 10 pm to 11 pm on all business days at Sadoport, during the period listed above.


Correspondents Pinto Basto have advised that the strikes reported in the article below and originally scheduled to end on 30 March 2020 have been extended to end on 1 June 2020. The strikes, and the restrictions on movement because of Covid-19, mean that the level of services the stevedores are able to supply are unpredictable.


Expected incidences for the port of Lisboa:

  • The strike will prevent any work on dry cargo operations (load/discharge) - in need of stevedores gangs within all terminals/berths at Lisbon - for all shifts during strike period without exception (from 08:00 am on March 09 to 08:00 am on June 01, 2020)

Meantime the Portuguese Government has Decreed minimum services to be fulfilled on following occasions:

  1. Discharge and load for all vessels with cargo, bound for, or coming from Azores and Madeira islands, without interruptions from the moment operations starts till completion, with exception of the compulsory breaks foreseen on work legal contracts
  2. Island cabotage for supply of all Portuguese Islands as foreseen by Portuguese Legislation
  3. Operations for movement of medicines or other hospital products
  4. Operations of Hazardous goods that might endanger people, structures and/or equipment such cargo is not moved
  5. Load and discharge of all goods pre-defined as vital to national economy and that are required for satisfaction of social needs
  6. Loading and/or discharge operations of all and any bulk agri-food product, liquid and solid, bound for human and animal food industry including extractive industries of edible oils
  7. Loading and/or discharge operations of goods and perishable products and raw-material for feed
  8. Loading and/or discharge operations of livestock
  9. Where a vessel enters port to restow cargo for safety reasons

  10. Operational interventions in case of fire, accidents, open water and vessel’s aground
  11. All materials acts indispensable to perform the above mentioned operations, in particular lashing/unlashing of cargo and transshipments, specially the gate activities in terminals that must open the gate for delivery and withdraw of products on working days from 08h00 to 17h00, as well as to guarantee the reposition of empty equipment from and to Azores and Madeira, remaining open during the operations until all cargo have been recaptioned.

Our thanks to Pinto Basto for providing this update.