Approximately 90% of Finland’s vital exports will be stopped by the strike of stevedores which began at 6 a.m. this morning. The Transport Workers Union, which is based in Helsinki, called the strike in support of better severance packages for workers who had been made redundant. The Confederation of Finnish Industries estimates that the cost of the action will be about 280 million euros ($382 million) in exports and imports a day.
According to the European Union’s statistics, Finland is one of the most strike-prone countries in Europe, with only Spain, France and Italy recording more strikes. The stoppages cost Finland an average 71 working days per 1000 workers each year between 2000 and 2007, compared with 137 for Spain and 83 for Italy. Sweden lost just 20 days a year.