2024-01-26T22:43:09+00:00January 26th, 2024|Export, Freight Talk, Import, Industry Spotlight, News, Shipping News|

German rail workers are in the midst of a week-long nationwide strike over working conditions and pay disputes. The Gewerkschaft Deutscher Lokomotivführer (GDL) initiated the strike. Spanning from January 23 to January 29, 2024, the labor action involves locomotive drivers, dispatchers, and other transport sector employees. The strike is expected to have a ripple effect across Europe in the coming days.

“The strike is massively damaging to the European modal shift policy in rail freight transport. The parties to the dispute are called upon to fulfil their responsibility for a climate-friendly transport policy and to immediately avert the effects of the strike, at least on the competitive railways, and to release the important European freight corridors for operation by the competitive railways.”
Dirk Stahl, President | European Rail Freight Administration


Shippers can anticipate disruptions in rail freight, impacting ship handling in German ports, although delays in port handling due to ship diversions around southern Africa are not expected to worsen. The strike’s regional implications are significant, particularly as it compounds the challenges posed by severe winter storms in Northern Europe. The European Rail Freight Association (ERFA) expressed concerns over the disproportionate impact of the strike on the wider North Europe network, highlighting disruptions in the critical Rhine-Alpine rail corridor connecting Rotterdam and Milan. ERFA emphasized the severe financial damage to rail freight companies and the erosion of customer confidence, labeling the situation as worrying and unacceptable.

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