PEMEX Workers Ask for the Reactivation of 17,000 Jobs
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PEMEX Workers Ask for the Reactivation of 17,000 Jobs

Photo by:   PEMEX, Twitter
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Karin Dilge By Karin Dilge | Journalist and Industry Analyst - Tue, 02/22/2022 - 16:25

Citing exhausting working conditions, PEMEX workers are asking for the reinstatement of 17,000 vacant positions across the country. Members of the company’s union claim that PEMEX has established 24-hour shifts as it is currently understaffed. The NOC faces pressure to improve its ESG record, though the human resource component remains underemphasized.

Silvia Ramos Luna, Secretary General of the National Union of Oil Professionals and Technicians (UNTyPP), said that the many vacant positions in the system have not been occupied, even though PEMEX has enough authorized resources in its assigned budget to fill the spots. Workers accuse the NOC of planning workdays lasting 24 consecutive hours or more due to lacking specialized staff, while Mexico’s Federal Labor Law and signed international treaties mandate a maximum 8-hour shift. 

In December 2021, the union reported it would file a complaint against the state-owned company for the infringement of the 23th chapter of USMCA, after the Ministry of Labor interrupted talks between the parties involved. The ministry dismissed their claims and said workers were neglecting their work. According to USMCA, parties involved in a labor dispute are entitled to support or defend their respective positions through information or evidence and final rulings should be based on information or evidence that parties presented during discussions in which they were given the opportunity to defend their position.

UNTyPP highlighted the case of the Cadereyta plant in Nuevo Leon, where employees are forced to work up to 32 hours. Government research identified the Cadereyta refinery as the principal polluter in Nuevo Leon, responsible for almost half of the state’s sulfur dioxide emissions.

On the back of such criticism, the Senate recently approved a reform to strengthen PEMEX's ESG efforts. This initiative pressures PEMEX to carry on with exploration, extraction and production of hydrocarbons while prioritizing environmental protection through climate change mitigation measures. The reform indicates that the state-owned company’s Administrative Council will need to make the necessary adjustments to its bylaws, as well as issue a guideline and strategy program to implement its new sustainable strategy.

Experts say a lack of adequate ESG plans jeopardize PEMEX’s efforts to attract investment and boost President López Obrador’s mission to rescue the NOC. The important governance component of an ESG plan would address issues related to human resources, though the government has not issued any proposals regarding this issue.

Photo by:   PEMEX, Twitter

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