Zueitina Oil Terminal’s worker union will go Sunday on a strike in demand of a salary hike of 67 percent, a figure that the government promised in 2013 but never fulfilled, the union announced.
Located 90 miles south of Benghazi on the eastern edge of the Gulf of Sirte, Zueitina serves as an export terminal for Zueitina Oil Company, a joint venture of the National Oil Corporation (NOC), Occidental Petroleum Corporation, and OMV AG.
The export from the terminal equates to 20 percent of the total Libyan export of crude oil, as it pumps between 60,000 and 70,000 barrels of oil.
Protests and strikes demanding a better income at various facilities have repeatedly lowered Libya’s oil output.
To resolve this crisis in the oil sector, the NOC included the 67 percent salary increase in its 2019 operating budget submission to the Government of National Accord (GNA) on December 5, 2018.
However, the GNA refused to set a salary increase for the oil sector’s workers in the 2019 general budget.
On Monday, the NOC Board of Directors and the Oil and Gas Workers Union expressed “disappointment” at the decision, which was also made by the Ministry of Finance and the the Central Bank of Libya.
“The NOC Board understands the pressure on government finances and the need for a balanced budget. The NOC staff, however, continue to support the national recovery more than any other, with their efforts resulting in a five-year annual revenue high in 2018,” NOC Chairman Mostafa Sanalla said in a statement.
The Libyan public sector pay decisions should be based on proper transparency and fairness,” he added.