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Unions calls on government to stop retrenchments at PetroSA

NUMSA and CEPPWAWU has joint forces to call on government to immediately put a stop to retrenchments at PetroSA and to put a stop to International Oil Companies (IOCs) abusing access to licencing to import diesel and petrol, which they say it will be undermining manufacturing capacity in South Africa and driving a job loss bloodbath. 

“As unions organising in the petroleum sector, and in particular in the refineries, the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (NUMSA) and the Chemical Energy Paper Printing Wood and Allied Workers Union (CEPPWAWU) have been left with no option but to put the record straight and call on government to intervene and put a stop to the greed of International Oil Companies (IOC’s) who are de-industrializing the country by closing local refineries and importing petrol and diesel, destroying workers’ jobs,” said the unions in a statement.

The unions calls on the ANC government, and in particular Minister Gwede Mantashe, to intervene on behalf of the South African public and defend the job security of workers in the refinery petroleum sector. 

“Government must put a stop to the clearly orchestrated agenda by IOCs such as Shell and BP, Engen, PetroSA, SAPREF and Chevron where these companies have taken a conscious, greedy decision to close refineries in South Africa and simply import the finished product, diesel and petrol into the country, using propaganda that crude oil is unaffordable, and citing government’s strict regulation on sulphur pollution,”

They say their message to government is that in the interest of the country, in particular the importance of stimulating economic growth and to preserve jobs and to create jobs, government must not allow these greedy IOCs who have chosen a get quick rich scheme, to shut down local refineries and to simply import finished products, abusing licences to import. 

“These IOCs are exploiting the free for all importation of petrol and diesel which has been allowed by government. As unions, we are making a clarion call that government must move swiftly and stop these IOCs from importing diesel and petrol. If they close refineries, they must not be allowed to import petrol and diesel,”

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