Archive for 3.5 Workers in the Oil Industry

A Cry for Justice: The Voices of Chinese Workers

The accounts in this book, told in workers’ voices from inside China, include reports about strikes in the oil and coal industries, as well as in the energy intensive sectors.

3.5 Workers in the Oil Industry

Conversation with a Retrenched Oil Worker in Daqing

Protests by retrenched oil workers in the city of Daqing have been continuing for over six weeks. Thousands – and on occasions, tens of thousands – of former oil workers have been gathering in Daqing’s Iron Man Square on a daily basis. In this broadcast, I ask why? At the time of the retrenchment, workers voluntarily applied for compensated redundancy, so what was the background to these agreements? How has the Daqing Petroleum Administration Bureau (DPAB) and the Daqing government reacted to protests from workers who dedicated their working lives to developing the Daqing oilfield? How have these workers been treated by the authorities? Over the next few programmes, we will use our broadcast to give the retrenched Daqing oil workers an opportunity to tell their side of the story.

3 Oil & Gas, 3.5 Workers in the Oil Industry

Daqing Workers’ Movement Continues: Two Workers Arrested in Guangyuan

The Daqing oil workers’ demonstration has already entered its fourth week. On 21 March, I called the Petroleum Administration Bureau’s (PAB) duty office to get an update on the latest developments of the workers’ demonstrations.

3 Oil & Gas, 3.5 Workers in the Oil Industry

Paying the Price: Worker Unrest in Northeast China

From March through May 2002, well-organized workers’ protests in three cities in northeastern China brought unprecedented numbers of disaffected, laid-off, and unemployed workers into the streets. In an area of high unemployment, extensive poverty, conspicuous wealth, and what is widely viewed as endemic corruption, workers protested non-payment of back wages and pensions, loss of benefits, insufficient severance pay, maneuvers intended to bypass elected workers congresses, and unfulfilled government promises to help the unemployed find jobs. Like previous demonstrations in other areas of the northeastern “rust-belt,” the protests emerged from several years of privatization, down-sizing, and bankruptcies of state-owned enterprises in which workers had been promised lifetime employment and broad benefits. The protests in 2002, however, involved tens of thousands of workers from dozens of factories and mines, and lasted longer than any protests since the violent suppression of the 1989 Democracy Movement. This included protests in Daqing in the oil sector, as well as energy intensive sectors.

3 Oil & Gas, 3.5 Workers in the Oil Industry