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Two unions join chorus against Canadian Pacific Railway Ltd’s Norfolk Southern Corp bid

Two trade unions representing workers at No. 4 U.S. railroad Norfolk Southern have joined a growing chorus of opposition to an unsolicited bid from Canadian Pacific.

Two trade unions representing workers at No. 4 U.S. railroad Norfolk Southern Corp have joined a growing chorus of opposition to an unsolicited bid from Canadian Pacific Railway Ltd, one in an unpublished letter sent to the U.S. rail regulator and the other in an interview with Reuters.

The moves add to a growing list of opponents to any deal, which includes customers of Norfolk Southern and a number of elected U.S. officials.

In a Jan. 7 letter to the Surface Transportation Board that has not yet been made public but was viewed by Reuters, Transportation Communications Union/International Association of Machinists President Robert Scardelletti urged the rejection of any proposed merger.

“CP’s proposed merger would result in massive job reductions of United States rail workers,” Scardelletti wrote. “If such a merger is approved, it undoubtedly would lead to further consolidation of the remaining U.S. carriers, with attendant job loss throughout every railroad craft.”

The TCU/IAM letter comes a few days after Reuters reported on a series of letters from Norfolk Southern customers to the STB opposing any merger.

Norfolk Southern declined to comment. A Canadian Pacific spokesman said this was evidence that Norfolk Southern “continues to mislead all stakeholders” while refusing to meet to discuss “the merits of this transformational opportunity.”

The Canadian company in mid-November disclosed its US$28-billion offer to buy Norfolk Southern.

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