Brazil oilworkers federation wants 24-hour stoppage in protest at Petrobras changes

San Francisco: The federation of Brazil’s oil industry workers, FUP, has called on its member unions to support a planned one-day work stoppage in protest at events surrounding Petrobras, the state-run oil company.

The 24-hour strike would happen on July 24 if the constituent unions give their backing.

FUP, in announcing the proposal, says it is a way to protest asset sell-offs at Petrobras as well as government-led moves to remove the company’s obligation to invest in all major offshore projects.

Immersed in scandal and suffering from the plunge in oil prices, Petrobras is having to sell off assets to cover some of its huge debts, the most in the global oil industry. And the lifting of the investment obligation is seen as another way of curtailing expenses.

The company itself has said it is unable to meet the minimum 30% investment requirement. If the bill on this matter passes into law it would open the field to overseas companies and investors.

But that’s where FUP’s fears lie. The union federation would prefer a swing in the opposite direction with the full nationalization of Petrobras. At present, although state run, Petrobras’ stock is held by non-government players and is traded on the New York and Sao Paulo stock exchanges.

Donal Scully

With 28 years experience writing and editing for newspapers in the UK and Hong Kong, Donal is now based in California from where he covers the Americas for Splash as well as ensuring the site is loaded through the Western Hemisphere timezone.
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