Calm urged in wake of South Africa oil worker strike

CHEVRON REFINERY RSAA Chevron refinery in South Africa. (Image Source: warrenski/Flickr)The South African Petroleum Industry Association (SAPIA) has confirmed that country's oil refineries are still producing despite an indefinite strike by energy workers

Around 15,000 workers affiliated with the Chemical, Energy, Paper, Printing, Wood and Allied Workers Union (CEPPWAWU) went on strike last week over demands for a 9 per cent payrise. While the strike has the potential to affect refineries of major companies, including BP, Chevron, Sasol and Shell, a SAPIA spokesperson has attempted to reassure consumers.

"Refineries will continue to produce," SAPIA executive director, Avhapfani Tshifularo said. He added that some parts of Gauteng province had faced delays in fuel deliveries and that some drivers transporting fuel to service stations from depots had been threatened but he did not go into further detail.

Reggie Sibiya, CEO of the Fuel Retailers Association, told Reuters that oil companies were not keen to deliver to poorer areas and were "using safety as an excuse". Mr Sibiya also told Reuters that there is "no need for panicked buying" and that "there is no crisis".

Chevron has confirmed that operations at its Cape Town plant, which produces 110,000 bpd, were continuing and the company is taking steps to mitigate the impact of the strike.

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