Brazil Oil Union Plans Indefinite Strike

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October 10, 2013


SAO PAULO, Oct 10 (Reuters) – Brazil’s national oil worker’s federation could start an indefinite strike on Oct. 17 if a pay dispute with state-run oil company Petroleo Brasileira SA is not resolved.

The workers have rejected Petrobras’ proposal offering a raise between 1.17 percent and 1.5 percent while workers want 5 percent, according to a statement on the federation’s website and will meet in coming days to make a decision on the strike.

Workers in the federation held a 24-hour strike on Oct. 3 and had already planned a protest on Oct. 17 against the auction of Brazil’s giant Libra offshore oil area, slated for Oct. 21.

Few strikes at Petrobras have had significant impact on company crude oil or fuels output over the past several years. Brazilian law requires unions representing workers at dangerous and sensitive facilities such as refineries and oil platforms to cooperate with management to maintain skeleton crews and minimum safety levels even during strikes.

Petrobras has not yet been informed of the oil workers’ decision, the company said in an e-mailed response to questions. It also said that it will take the necessary measures needed to maintain production of oil and fuels safely and securely during any strike.

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