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FUP prepares September strike in defence of Petrobras

29 July, 2015After the 24-hour strike on 24 July, members of the main oil industry union in Brazil, FUP/CUT, are preparing another strike in September in defence of Petrobras.

The oil workers’ federation, FUP/CUT, affiliated to CNQ-CUT and IndustriALL Global Union, is organizing action to prevent the privatization of Petrobras. It held a 24-hour strike on 24 July and is planning another strike in September.

Following a corruption scandal and crisis, attempts are being made to sell off Brazil’s biggest oil company, the 64 per cent state-owned Petrobras, at a very low share price. However, members of FUP/CUT want the company to remain in the public sector because of its essential role in ensuring the country’s development.

“Metalworkers, especially those working in this industry, construction workers and contract oil workers are already suffering the consequences of the dismantling of the national oil industry. Thousands of jobs have been lost, construction projects have been put on hold and investments suspended,” said FUP/CUT in a press release published on its website.

The union federation said it will begin an indefinite strike in September if there is not a positive response to its 24-hour strike. It opposes proposed changes in legislation that aim to remove Petrobras’ exclusive rights to exploit the Pre-Salt oilfields.

The 24-hour strike affected refineries, oil platforms, terminals, pipelines, onshore oilfields, biodiesel plants, thermal plants and administrative offices throughout the country. The FUP/CUT said this was the first step in a major historic battle.

Fernando Lopes, Assistant General Secretary of IndustiALL Global Union said that:

Petrobras is essential for the country’s development: the royalties it generates should continue to be used to fund free quality public health and education. The struggle to keep Petrobras in the public sector is not just a struggle of oil workers, it is a struggle of the entire Brazilian people.