The 24-hour national strike in Belgium has ended. Most terminals at the Port of Antwerp were closed after dock workers, ferry operators and others stopped work at 6 a.m. local time on Monday morning, January 30th, 2012.
The strike cost the port US$1.3 million per hour in “loss in added value,” Annik Dirkx, spokesperson for the port, told reporters.
Led by Belgium’s three main unions, public workers protested government reforms aimed at reducing the country’s growing debt. Proposed austerity measures include raising taxes, raising the retirement age, and freezing wages for the public sector.
Some flights at Brussels airport were also cancelled as a result of the strike.
Photo shows Port of Antwerp entrance. Credit: Serge Van Cauwenbergh.