Workers at an oil refinery owned by LyondellBasell Industries in Berre voted to extend by another 24 hours a strike that began last week to protest against the closure of the plant, as per Dow Jones. On Sept. 27, the company decided to close the loss-making 105,000 bpd refinery after it failed to find a buyer, despite putting a sale tag in May. It had acquired the refinery in 2008. The refinery's closure is expected to affect about 370 jobs, LyondellBasell said in a statement.
"We continue to maintain a constructive dialogue with union representatives and we will not speculate on the duration of the strike," said a spokesman for LyondellBasell. "We understand the emotion, the solidarity between employees, and we respect their rights. Still, a closure of the unprofitable refinery would enable us to focus on our core petrochemical assets and would preserve 900 jobs. Union representatives sent a letter to the supervisory board Sunday, raising questions about the future of LyondellBasell's operations in Berre, said Foulard.
"It is not appropriate for the board to interfere with local management issues. Consultation will be managed locally," said the company's spokesman.