International shippers are growing increasingly desperate as on-going strike activity causes innumerable backlogs to Port of Santos import operations.
Brazil’s Receita Federal, represented by Sindifisco, the Customs officers’ union, have been staging all-day protests since October 2017. In February, the union received a four-month, full-pay extension from Brazil’s High Court to continue pressure for increased pay and improved benefits to pensions and bonuses.
The strike activity, that had been limited to one-day demonstrations, has been increased to three-day protests causing over 3,000-4,000 containers of backlog and adding up to 15 days to deliveries at Brazil’s largest port.
While emergency cargo such as medicines, perishables, and hazardous shipments receive preferential treatment, Brazil’s automotive manufacturing is especially feeling the pressure. Automobile manufacturing imported over $11.5 billion and exported $6.5 billion in auto parts in 2016, employing over 160,000 locals.
As imports start to experience 21-day delays, each day of protest costs the Brazilian government roughly $28.9 million, adding even more pressure for a resolution from the newly appointed ministers of Finance and Planning under the Temer administration.
As shippers eagerly await resolution, poor pay and working conditions is also aggravating strikes from local stevedores and port authorities, potentially adding more complications in the near future.
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