AVONDALE, La., Sept. 26, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Huntington Ingalls Industries (NYSE:HII) announced today that members of the New Orleans Metal Trades Council (NOMTC) and the Metal Trades Department (MTD) approved a new collective bargaining agreement with the company's Avondale subsidiary. "We are pleased with the ratification of the collective bargaining agreement by members of the Metal Trades Council," said Chris Kastner, HII's corporate vice president and general manager, corporate development. "This collaboration between management and labor is another example of how we continue to work together to provide the best opportunities for our employees and at the same time better position Avondale to compete for future contracts in the commercial market." The new contract, which will run from Jan. 6, 2014, through Jan. 6, 2019, contains a wage and benefits package designed to be competitive in the commercial industry in which Avondale is pursuing future work. Union leadership, represented by MTD President Ron Ault, issued a statement, saying, "Avondale, the MTD and the NOMTC are pleased that our negotiated proposal for a new collective bargaining agreement has been ratified by our members. We worked together on this agreement and will support Avondale in its efforts to acquire work in the commercial energy market." If the company is not successful in finding work for Avondale in the commercial market, the plan, as announced in 2010, will be to close the facility. Celebrating 75 years of excellence, Avondale offers a long record of experience in modular engineering and construction. The company is capable of executing a wide range of commercial industrial projects based on expertise developed through shipbuilding and a history of applying those techniques to other manufacturing projects. Avondale offers unique facilities, a talented and experienced workforce, and 30 years of modular construction knowledge, all strategically located in the Gulf of Mexico region with deepwater river access to ports worldwide as well as 33 states through the Mississippi River system.