Ashdod Port Company is announcing this morning that it intends to implement the process of immediately hiring 32 new dockworkers from a group of 80 that are intended to be hired during the first half of 2018 for the Operations sector. The new employees will come from specific population groups: Women, Ethiopian immigrants and minorities including Druze, Muslims and Circassians.
Port management says that hiring the new employees is vital in order to improve, deepen and expand the customer service. Furthermore, hiring the new dockworkers will shorten the ship wait time and will expedite the work done on them on the platform. This will reduce costs for the exporter and the Israeli importer, leading to a drop in the cost of the living in the Israeli economy and to an increase in the amount of cargo coming through the Ashdod Port platforms.
Hiring the new employees will strengthen Ashdod Port Company and will help it prepare for the era of competition between the seaports. This process will continue to establish the Port's business activity and its financial viability, which is extremely important in order to ensure real occupational security for the Company's employees.
Ashdod Port Company's management respects the labor relations array, the labor agreements that were signed and the employees' right to unionize. At the same time, the desire to announce a labor dispute at Ashdod Port is unfounded and baseless. It is unfathomable that the employees' representatives backed by the General Organization of Workers are protesting the hiring of new manpower for the Company and are trying to hamper the efforts to create new sources of employment and livelihood in southern Israel.
Isaac Blumenthal, CEO of Ashdod Port Company noted that: "This is a ridiculous situation in light of the fact that this Sunday Ashdod Port was shut down along with most of the economy due to extensive dismissals that took place recently all over Israel, including the south and Ashdod itself. Hiring new employees at Ashdod Port Company is the responsibility of company management and they alone are authorized to decide in this matter. We will continue to hire the process of hiring new employees as planned and we will not tolerate disruptions. If the union acts on its threats we will not hesitate to go to Labor Court and to employ all measures at our disposal in order to ensure continuous customer service and port activity, which is so vital for the Israeli economy".