VANCOUVER, March 5, 2014 /CNW/ - With strike action by container
truckers scheduled to begin tomorrow at Port Metro Vancouver's
container terminals, Retail Council of Canada (RCC) called upon all
parties involved to take the necessary steps to avert the disruption of
goods coming into Canada's largest gateway.
This disruption of container traffic comes at a time when there is
already a significant backlog of containers as a result of weather
conditions in Central and Eastern Canada.
"The operation of the Port of Vancouver is of vital importance to the
retail industry across Canada. Retailers view the current labour
dispute with growing concern," said Diane J. Brisebois, President and
CEO of RCC.
With Port Metro Vancouver handling over $170 billion in goods annually,
even a few days' disruption can have a major economic impact on the
retail industry. "Our greatest concern is that Canadian consumers
will not be able to obtain the goods they require. While it may be
possible to re-route some containers through U.S. west coast ports, one
inevitable consequence of doing so will be higher prices for consumers
and lower economic activity in Canada," Ms. Brisebois added.
RCC appreciates the efforts of the British Columbia Government in
working to achieve a settlement. Retailers call upon all parties
involved to be mindful of the impact on Canadian consumers and of the
potential consequences for retail employment if goods are not getting
through. The retail sector is hopeful that an agreement can be reached
at an early stage.
Retail Council of Canada (www.retailcouncil.org) is the Voice of Retail. Founded in 1963, RCC is a not-for-profit
association which represents more than 45,000 stores of all retail
formats, including department, grocery, independent merchants, regional
and national specialty chains, and online merchants. The retail
industry employs 2.2 million Canadians, including almost 300,000
SOURCE: Retail Council of Canada
For further information:
Director, Government Relations (B.C.)
Retail Council of Canada