20 February 2019
RMT Press Office:
Maritime union RMT on the sale of P&O Ferries to Dubai Ports World
Maritime Union RMT today said that the sale of P&O Ferries for £322m from Dubai World to Dubai Ports World raised fresh concerns over the future direction of shipping and ports policy in the UK, including the Port of Dover.
Commenting on the announcement RMT General Secretary Mick Cash said:
“P&O’s freight and passenger ferry fleet connecting UK and European ports is now entirely registered under Flags of Convenience.
“For this to be followed by Dubai Ports World taking ownership of these vital routes and ships is of concern to us and our members working from ports up and down the UK, but particularly Dover which remains publicly owned.
“We’ve again received assurances from P&O that no jobs will be affected but this announcement once again demonstrates that regardless of Brexit, neo-liberal economics have the UK’s maritime interests by the throat.
“DP World are expanding in the UK, with ownership of London Gateway and the country’s second largest container terminal in Southampton.
“The strategic aim of this corporate carve up in Dubai is the ownership of more of the UK’s vital ports network, with the creation of so-called ‘free ports’ clearly on the cards.
“Once again, the Transport Secretary is nowhere to be seen when the UK’s vital maritime interests are carved up and sold off, leaving seafarers, dockers, passengers and businesses facing uncertainty.”