Petrobras' oil workers start 5-Day strike



RIO DE JANEIRO — The Brazilian Oil Workers Federation (FUP), a union that represents oil workers at state-run Petrobras, intends to carry out a five-day strike that will commence on March 23, reports Dow Jones.

The union said Friday that workers are planning to suspend their duties in protest of Petrobras’ latest profit-sharing proposal, which offers reduced profit-sharing payments compared to the last four years, according to Dow Jones. The oil giant’s reduction proposal was issued depite the company’s record earnings last year.

Petrobras’ revenues rose by 39% in 2008, the profits of which surged from higher oil output and domestic fuel prices in 2008.

In July 2008, the local Estado news agency reported that Petrobras raised its profit-sharing offer from a previous offer of 12.82% to about 16% of the value received by Petrobras shareholders in dividends.

Last year, oil workers reponded to Petrobras’ profit-sharing proposal and other work issues by suspending production on four of the 42 offshore rigs in the Campos Basin for five days, the result of which led to Petrobras losing output of about 63,000 barrels a day of crude.

A 2008 report by Dow Jones stated that Brazil allows workers to receive a profit-sharing payment of as much as 25% of shareholder dividends. FUP wants Petrobras to pay the full 25% allowed by law.


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