British Columbia port workers are back on the job after a tentative agreement was reached between the employers association and the workers union, ending a 13-day-old strike.

A B.C. Maritime Employers Association spokesman says work at the Port of Vancouver began yesterday at 4:30 p.m. with 120 workers to be dispatched overnight, ramping up to 500 by 8 a.m. today.

The association says it reached a four-year agreement with the International Longshore and Warehouse Union Canada.

The union, which represents 7,400 workers in the job action that began July 1, has not yet commented on the pact.

The agreement is subject to ratification by members of both the union and the maritime employers, and no additional details on the deal have been released.

Federal Labour Minister Seamus O'Regan said Thursday that the strike that had snarled trade worth billions was over and thanked both sides.

But he and Transport Minister Omar Alghabra said in a statement that the extent of the disruption showed the importance of the relationship between industry and labour, and that Canada's "supply chains and our economy depend on it."

The tentative agreement to end the strike came after O'Regan ordered a mediator to issue terms for a settlement, saying the gap in the deadlocked talks was "not sufficient to justify a continued work stoppage."

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 14, 2023.

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