Tuesday’s Negotiation between Shell and Union Leaders Made No Progress
Negotiations between Royal Dutch Shell Plc and union leaders made no progress on Tuesday, as both of them argued over a new wage contract for US refinery workers who have been on strike for three days.
The two camps have been at a standoff since the United Steelworkers union (USW) called walkouts early on Sunday for the first time since 1980.
Shell reopened communications with the union on Late Monday. Since the first bargaining on January 21, the union has rejected five offers from Shell.
The Tuesday's meeting was scheduled as both the parties used increasingly harsh language about the dispute, ramping up their expression in private and public.
Executives have made it very clear that they will try to hold firm. They said that they cannot afford to increase wages as crude prices have decreased by 50% since June, which has eroded their profits.
But some other executives have suggested Shell, acting as the lead negotiator for oil companies, gave away too much in negotiations held in years past.
Meanwhile, the union has said further walkouts may be ordered at some of the other 63 refineries and chemical plants it represents if progress is not made.
Company spokesman Ray Fisher said Shell aimed to come to a satisfactory agreement for both parties. The company, which has declined to detail the nature of the talks, did not immediately provide an update on the outcome of the negotiations on Tuesday.
It has been found that the union is seeking annual pay increase of 6%, which is double the size of those in the last agreement. The union also wants work that has been given in the past to non-union contractors to start going to USW members.
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