Staff to strike at Chevron gas facilities in Australia

Workers at two of Chevron's major natural gas plants in Australia are set to go on strike next week, the U.S. energy giant said yesterday, threatening up to five percent of global LNG supplies.

Chevron has been told the strikes will start Sept. 7 at its Gorgon and Wheatstone facilities in Western Australia, an announcement that has spooked markets already upended by Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

The company said it would "continue to take steps to maintain safe and reliable operations in the event of disruption at our facilities".

"We will also continue to work through the bargaining process as we seek outcomes that are in the interests of both employees and the company," it told AFP in a statement.

The Offshore Alliance, which represents Chevron's highly unionised workforce, said the strikes would "escalate each week until Chevron agrees to our bargaining claims."

Strike action would cover some 500 staff and include "rolling stoppages, bans and limitations", the alliance added.

Union representatives said staff were looking to secure better pay, more flexible rosters, and enduring job security.

The Offshore Alliance has previously warned that it could "jam up" Chevron's operations, costing the company "billions in revenue."

Industrial action taken by Australian staff on Shell's Prelude gas ship lasted for 76 days last year, causing an estimated $650 million in lost revenues.

Although Europe has largely replenished gas stockpiles disrupted by the war in Ukraine, there are fears that further disruptions, coupled with strong demand in Asia, could put the squeeze on supplies.

Saxo Markets analyst Redmond Wong said news of the strike could bring "knee-jerk reactions in European gas prices" - but...

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