Auckland's striking port workers will be consulting their lawyers this afternoon.
It follows the threat by Ports of Auckland CEO Tony Gibson to replace 330 union employees with private contractors.
Maritime Union president Garry Parsloe says doing that may not be as easy as Mr Gibson thinks.
"There is a trade union movement in New Zealand that's not too happy with it and the world international shipping isn't very happy about all this," he told Newstalk ZB's Larry Williams.
Mr Parsloe says that's not a threat of industrial action - but a warning the union movement here and overseas will be looking at the Port.
Ports of Auckland CEO Tony Gibson says his company's had the option to contract out the workforce for a number of months, and it's now time to move.
He says the union's being told the port company will be exercising its right to contract out the work.
Mr Gibson says they've spent 11 months trying get a formal agreement signed, without any acknowledgment from the Maritime Union on the fact the ports need to improve.