3 Feb 2010

Businesses in American Samoa feel pinch of cannery closure

11:32 am on 3 February 2010

Businesses in American Samoa that have been dependent on the canneries are feeling the effects of one closing and the other scaling back operations.

Stevedoring companies have reduced work hours for employees and are trying to make up for lost cannery business from other companies.

The Manager of Stevedoring, Mark Foster, says the closure of Samoa Packing has forced them to reduce hours for their more than 60 employees.

Mr Foster says it's trying as much as possible to avoid layoffs and telling workers it's better to have reduced work hours than not having a job.

He says since Samoa Packing closed there's been a marked drop in container ships calling in to Pago Pago harbor, adding that they used to average 10-12 ships per month but now that number has gone down to six.