By Paul Vieira

OTTAWA--Canadian Pacific Kansas City says it could take up to two months for the country's labor-relations board to issue a decision on whether railroads must transport certain goods during a labor disruption.

If so, that could push back the timing of a simultaneous strike by over 9,000 unionized workers at both CPKC and Canadian National Railway into August.

CPKC issued its expectations for timing in a statement Thursday, in which it also said it will resume talks with Teamsters Canada on Friday on a new collective-bargaining deal with its rail-traffic controllers. The railroad added that CPKC offered to enter binding arbitration to avoid a work stoppage, but the union declined.

Teamsters Canada didn't immediately respond with a request for comment.

Last week, Canada's Labor Minister, Seamus O'Regan, asked the Canadian Industrial Relations Board to review whether the country's railroads must continue to transport certain goods in the event of a possible strike later this month. The board said interested parties have until May 21 to file submissions.

According to a bulletin issued by Teamsters Canada, the labor-relations board has said parties--such as the railroads, the union and companies--have until May 31 to file rebuttals to those submissions.

"Based on precedent, it is unlikely the parties will be in a position to initiate a legal strike or lockout within the next 60 days," CPKC said. It added that the Labor Minister's request "has created uncertainty regarding the timing of a potential work stoppage and corresponding interruption of rail service on our Canadian network."

Teamsters Canada had originally targeted May 22 as the potential start for a simultaneous strike at both Calgary, Alberta-based CPKC and Montreal-based Canadian National.

Write to Paul Vieira at

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

05-16-24 0922ET