LatAm Briefs: Health Workers Protest In Argentina

(Energy Analytics Institute, 14.Apr.2021) — Energy briefs from the Latin America and Caribbean region including: Argentina’s Labor Ministry issuing a mandatory conciliation between oil workers and companies, companies in Argentina prepare to pay more for gas starting 1 May 2021, and health and social workers protest in Neuquén.

Argentina’s Labor Ministry Issues Mandatory Conciliation

Argentina’s Labor Ministry issued a mandatory conciliation between oil workers and companies for approximately 15 days and ordered the unions refrain from carrying out a strike demanding a wage increase.

The main oil workers union had warned of plans to launch a strike after negotiations between unions and company executives failed, the daily newspaper La Nacion reported on 14 April 2021.

The measure has potential to further impact logistical activity in Vaca Muerta, which has already been impacted for a week by union protests led by health and social workers.

“It is necessary to have the pertinent measures to promote a peaceful and legal solution to the conflict,” the ministry said in the resolution.

Oil workers are demanding a 30% increase in 2020 wages, in addition to the 15% agreed in October, to equalize Argentina’s inflation, according to details provided by the Private Oil and Gas Union of Río Negro, Neuquén and La Pampa, which represents 24,000 workers.

Source: Río Negro

Health Workers Strike In Neuquén, Block Key Routes

Argentine health workers continued with protests in different locations in Neuquén as announcement of a $30,000 peso bond to be paid in three installments failed to resolve the wage conflict.

Strikers in the heart of Vaca Muerta mainly blocked routes 7 and 17, according to reports on 14 April 2021 in the daily Río Negro.

Companies To Pay More For Gas Starting 1 May

The wellhead price of gas purchased by most companies in Argentina will increase between 20% and 100% in accordance with the specific rate agreed upon with the producer or marketer.

The price increases will take effective on 1 May 2021, the daily La Nacion reported on 14 April 2021. The price set by Argentina’s so-called Gas Plan is $3.80/MMbtu.

The price companies pay now range from $1.80/MMbtu to $2.50/MMbtu. In the case where the price is $2.50/MMbtu and the new price rises to $3.80/MMbtu, the increase will be 20%, while based on a price of $1.80/MMbtu and a new price of $3.80/MMbtu, the increase will be greater than 100%.

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By Aaron Simonsky. © Energy Analytics Institute (EAI). All Rights Reserved.