Votes have been cast and are now being counted all around Iceland as the seamen’s unions memberships deliver their verdict on the deal hammered out between unions and owners’ federation SFS early on Saturday morning.
Meetings were held in many ports yesterday to present the terms of the agreement to union members and today crews are already on their way to join ships, with some whole crews being bussed to where their vessels are docked, often on the other side of the country.
According to to some early reports, the decision could be a narrow one in some areas as the union memberships are less than satisfied with the approach taken by SFS during the long dispute, and the possibility is that the coaches taking crews to their ships could be turned around if the agreements are voted down.
Fisheries minister Thorgerður Katrín Gunnarsdóttir has been quoted in several media as saying that the Ministry has in fact been ready with legislation prepared to take to Parliament to end the strike – an admission that has resulted in further dissatisfaction.
Union members have been left in no doubt that if the agreement is voted down this time, then legislation by the government to bring the strike to a rapid end is undoubtedly the next step.
Results are expected to be announced tonight at 2000 Icelandic time.