Protests at Dos Bocas Refinery / Patria VaccineBy Paloma Duran | Thu, 10/14/2021 - 11:01
Protests at Dos Bocas refinery. President Andrés Manuel López Obrador asked the employees who are building the Dos Bocas refinery in Tabasco to stop allowing their unions to manipulate them. López Obrador explained that their demands are false and emphasized that workers receive a fair salary and benefits. "I hope that the protests at Dos Bocas are isolated and do not happen again. I want the workers not to allow themselves to be manipulated. If they want a leader to help them, I am at their service. This is a conflict between unions, not how the government treats them."
This week, workers from the firm ICA Fluor, a PEMEX contractor, went on strike at the Dos Bocas refinery to demand better wages and working conditions. Employees said that they work 10.5 hours a day in exchange for MX$3,700 (US$169.7), which is why they are demanding a salary increase. ICA Group said that it has complied with all contractual, legal, salary and security commitments. The situation went viral after videos of violent clashes between security forces and employees circulated online.
AMLO: Bitcoin will not be categorized as legal tender. López Obrador said that the government will continue to manage its finances in a traditional way and discarded the use of bitcoin as legal tender. “We are not going to change in that sense. We think that we have to maintain orthodoxy in financial management and not try to innovate it. What we have to do is make sure that incomes are good, that there is no tax evasion, that there are no privileges, that we all contribute and that should be enough.”
Recently, the CEO of the Mexican stock exchange BMV, José-Oriol Bosch, announced that the exchange was evaluating the possibility of listing crypto futures on its derivatives exchange. Bosch said that he sees crypto instruments as the future of money. However, he said that he understood that crypto is still new and that the authorities are taking a more cautious position.
Jobs lost by the pandemic have been recovered. López Obrador announced that the jobs lost during the pandemic have been recovered and highlighted that more job opportunities have been created. “We have already recovered all the jobs that were lost in the pandemic. We must have around 20.5 million workers registered with Social Security, which is more than we had before the pandemic.”
Due to the pandemic, Mexico lost around 1.2 million formal jobs between March and July 2020. According to an IMSS report, Mexico recovered 172,096 formal jobs in September, the highest number of the year. The authorities reported that job creation has an upward trend, taking as reference the 128,000 jobs created in August, 116,543 in July and 65,936 in June.
Government allocates more money for the development of the Mexican COVID-19 vaccine. López Obrador said that the government had allocated MX$180 million (US$8.72 million) to continue supporting the development of research on the Mexican COVID-19 vaccine called Patria, which is being carried out by CONACYT. López Obrador emphasized that it has been one of the government's priorities to create a Mexican COVID-19 vaccine to further accelerate the national vaccination plan. “We are going to have our vaccine. We are working hard for that. CONACYT has our full support and we have just authorized a greater investment to support the research.”
Director of CONACYT María Elena Álvarez-Buylla Roces recently announced that CONACYT will soon begin phase 1 of the human clinical trial for the Patria vaccine. Likewise, she reported that the first batches of the vaccine have already been prepared for the clinical trial. The trial will have a participation of 90-100 volunteers with an age range between 18 and 55 years. The results are expected to be ready by the end of May 2022. Álvarez said that if the established times are followed, the vaccine would be analyzed by COFEPRIS by the end of the year to authorize its emergency use.
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