A strike by Brazilian oil workers has had significant and quick impact on Petrobras’ output, both the company and the labour union announced on Tuesday.
The action began on Sunday in protest at austerity measures being taken and promised by the country’s state-run oil firm.
The main union, the FUP, said oil production was down by 500,000 barrels per day, primarily because of strike action in the offshore Campos Basin.
Petrobras put the shortfall at 273,000 barrels per day but even that lower figure represents a 13% drop off on pre-strike levels. Experts say it could amount to $25m daily in lost revenue for Petrobras at a time it can least afford it.
Petrobras is cutting back investments, reducing budget and laying off workers. It is all in an effort to lower the firm’s huge debt and to compensate for the plunging price of oil as well as the costs incurred because of the infamous bribes-for-contracts scandal surrounding the company.