Left Menu
Development News Edition

Portuguese fuel drivers strike, government imposes rationing

Reuters | Lisbon | Updated: 12-08-2019 16:15 IST | Created: 12-08-2019 16:01 IST
Portuguese fuel drivers strike, government imposes rationing
Image Credit: Pixabay

The Portuguese government imposed fuel rationing at petrol stations as fuel-tanker drivers started an indefinite strike on Monday and it promised to prevent the labour action from paralysing the country at the height of the tourist season. A similar strike in April was Portugal's worst outbreak of industrial unrest in years, provoking criticism of the Socialist government, but this time better contingency planning could even benefit the administration in an upcoming parliamentary election on Oct. 6, analysts say.

The government declared an energy crisis on Friday ahead of the strike, allowing it to ensure full supplies to ports, hospitals, airports and other priority consumers and decreed minimum services for the country's network of filling stations. Some 30 percent of the country's filling stations were out of fuel, but there were few lines at those working.

"I'd like to point out as a positive that minimum services are being provided...The situation is that of normality and civility," Prime Minister Antonio Costa told reporters. There has been no need to resort to a back-up plan to use army and police drivers, he said, although the government stands ready to launch these and other special measures if supplies are compromised.

Tanker drivers decided to stop work for the second time this year after talks with their private-sector employers over better pay and workers' rights failed. The fuel rationing for the public restricts drivers to a maximum of 15 litres of petrol or diesel per filling at specially designated stations covered by the government-decreed minimum services scheme, and 25 litres at all other stations.

The National Hazardous Materials Drivers' Union (SNMMP), which called the strike, said they would comply with the minimum services, but there are concerns they may fail after some union leaders called to stop providing them. Costa called for government-brokered negotiations between the union and employers to resume as soon as possible.

The fuel-tanker drivers said the strike will carry on until the employers' association ANTRAM makes a "reasonable proposal". "Until then we will strike for a day, a week, a month, as long as it takes," said SNMMP vice president Pedro Pardal Henriques. The Independent Freight Drivers' Union (SIMM) will also take part in the strike.

Also Read: Voice calls from Jio Fibre fixed-line phones to anywhere in the country will be free for life: Mukesh Ambani



South Africa's COVID-19 response: Surprising outcomes or just poor data management?

South Africa has been committed to improving its health information system and shows that a robust digital has considerable scope to improve healthcare for the entire population. But the COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted that significant ga...

Post-COVID-19 Nigeria needs a robust Health Management Information System to handle high disease burden

Nigeria is among a few countries that conceptualised a health management information system HMIS in the early 90s but implementation has been a challenge till date. Besides COVID-19, the country has a huge burden of communicable and non-com...

Morocco COVID-19 response: A fragile health system and the deteriorating situation

Learning from its European neighbors, Morocco imposed drastic measures from the initial stages of the COVID-19 outbreak to try to contain its spread. The strategy worked for a few months but the cases have surged after mid-June. In this sit...

COVID-19: Argentina’s health system inefficiencies exaggerate flaws of health information system

You can recover from a drop in the GDP, but you cant recover from death, was the straightforward mindset of Argentinas President Alberto Fernndez and defined the countrys response to COVID-19. The South American nation imposed a strict...


Latest News

Madrid heads for lockdown after Spain announces new virus restrictions

Madrid residents are set to be barred from leaving the city except on essential trips under new coronavirus restrictions announced by the Spanish government on Wednesday.The citys borders will also be closed to outsiders for non-necessary v...

Multiplex operators welcome govt's directive to open cinemas with 50 pc capacity

Cinema operators on Wednesday welcomed the governments guideline permitting opening of cinemas, theatres and multiplexes with up to 50 per cent of their seating capacity from October 15. The Multiplex Association of India MAI said it would ...

Cricket betting racket busted in Telangana, one held with Rs 2 lakh

A cricket betting racket was busted on Wednesday with the seizure of Rs 2 lakh and arrest of one man by the Telangana Police. As per the police statement, the Hyderabad City Commissioners Task Force, South Zone Team, along with Saifabad Pol...

Next Trump-Biden debate will have new rules to aid 'orderly discussion'

The group that manages U.S. presidential election debates said on Wednesday it will take steps to bring order to the final two contests between President Donald Trump and Joe Biden, following widespread criticism. The 90-minute debate on Tu...

Give Feedback