While most of the attention over the past week has been on the election in Iran, something important has happened in the field of labor at the same time.
Reports from various parts of the country indicated that in some refineries and companies operating under the supervision of Iran’s Ministry of Oil, contract workers went on strike.
Why Iranian Workers Go to Strike?
After investigating why this happened, it became clear that the constant problem of contracts and the inappropriate and unfair behavior of the contractors, and the negligence and lack of supervision of the Ministry of Oil have prevented this hard-working class from achieving their true rights.
According to local sources, the salaries of official employees of the Ministry of Petroleum are between three and four times higher than those who work as contractors.
That is if an official employee with the same job but under a contract with the Ministry of Oil receives a salary of 120 to 150 million rials [$485.82] per month, a contract worker who does the same job with the same conditions and difficulty but is under a contract with a contractor of the Ministry of Oil will receive a salary of 40 million rials [$161.94], which is to be accepted, a figure that is both extremely unjust and does not cover the living expenses of this day at all.
Iranians Continue Protests; at Least 22 Rallies and Strikes on May 22 and 23
And as usual, these strikes have been ignored by both Iran’s media and the authorities. As a result, the workers’ strike in Khark terminal has become a widespread movement and has spread from the oil sector to other areas, and workers in other sectors, such as steel, have also gone on strike in support of the oil workers. An event that will undoubtedly cause serious damage to the country’s economy and will be like a shock to Iran’s oil industry.
Instead of responding and trying to solve the workers’ problem and monitoring the performance of the contractors who have a contract with this ministry, the Ministry of Petroleum, in charge of this field, referred the problems to the private sector in response to reporters’ questions.
And on the pretext that this is in the realm of private companies, the ministry of Petroleum evaded accountability. The result of this stance has been the widespread dismissal of workers.
What the oil workers are demanding is not strange. These workers are demanding the right that their companions with similar working and professional conditions are receiving the benefits, and the officials of the Ministry of Oil have to prevent this discrimination to occur in their subdivisions even if the area is in the hands of the private sector.
The fact that the contractors of the ministries and organizations are abusing their employees and workers is an issue that has a long history, and the responsible agencies and the government’s three branches are closing their eyes on this issue so that the country is witnessing a recurrence of this situation. If this issue is not resolved radically, even if these strikes end well, the government will face such events again in other parts of the country’s working class.
Workers’ Strike in 61 Centers
According to the opposition People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK), workers and employees in around 61 refineries, petrochemical and industrial centers, and power plants have gone to the strike. They are as follows:
1- Contract workers of Gachsaran Petrochemical Plant in Kohgiluyeh and Boyer-Ahmad province
2- Bidboland Refinery Behbahan Phase 2 in Khuzestan province
3- Civil Industry Phase 14 in Tehran province
4- Petrochemical Elixir of Industry Phase 14 in Bushehr province
5- South Pars Oil and Gas Companies, Gas Field in Bushehr province
6 – Sina Sanat Ahmadpour Company in the unit ASU in Khuzestan province
7 – “Sadaf” Petrochemical Company in Bushehr province
8 – Khesht va Kenratakhteh Company in Fars province
9 – South Adish Refinery Kangan Spherical and Cylindrical Tanks of Karami Contracting and Rajan Company in Bushehr province
10 – “Jahan Pars” Petrochemical Company in Tehran province
11 – Satrap Sanat South Pars Company in Tehran province
12 – Sina Refining Company Qeshm in Hormozgan province
13 – Tavanmand Company Phase 22 and 24 in Isfahan province
14 – Overhaul of Tehran Oil Refinery in Tehran province
15 – Farjud—Site 1 in Bushehr province
16 – Persian Gulf Star Oil Co in Hormozgan province
17 – Pars Phenol and Sina Pars Phenol Industry in Asaluyeh in Bushehr province
18 – Petrochemical Site 1 Samsam Sanat in Bushehr province
19 – Tondgouian Refinery in Tehran province
20 – Dena Petrochemical in Bushehr province
21 – Jahan Pars Company in Tehran province
22 – Payandan Company Contract in Phase 14 Assaluyeh in Bushehr province
23 – Phase 13 of Lidoma Company in Tehran province
24 – Phase 13 (Akhtar Phase) South Pars in Bushehr province
25 – Welding section of Bushehr Petrochemical in Bushehr province
26 – Spherical tanks Construction of Arak in Markazi province
27 – Farab Company project in Bidkhoon power plant in Bushehr province
28 – phases 11, 12, 13, 14, and 24 phases of Assaluyeh in Bushehr province
29 – Abadan refinery in Khuzestan province
30 – phase 13 of Kangan in Bushehr province
31 – Bidkhoon refinery in Bushehr province
32 – IGC Abadan refinery in Khuzestan province
33 – Hajipour Contracting Co in Tehran province
34 – Qeshm Oil Reservoirs in Hormozgan province
35 – Marine operations of Iran Oil Terminals Company in Bushehr province
36 – Sepahan Cement of Isfahan Holding in Isfahan province
37 – Employed AJC Company, Abadan Refinery Phase 2 in Khuzestan province
38 – ILD Power Supply and Instrument Company located at Bandar Tonbak in Bushehr province
39 – Kayhan Pars site in Khuzestan province
40 – Sazeh Pod Company in Tehran province
41 – Abadan Refinery in Khuzestan province
42 – South Tehran Company located in Mahshahr Port in Khuzestan province
43 – Employed Petrosaz Company In Bandar Abbas Oil Company in Hormozgan province
44 – Mobin Sanat Company working in Adish Petroleum Refinery in Hormozgan province
45 – Rajan Company working in Adish in Hormozgan province
46 Refinery of Ramin Power Plant in Ahvaz in Hormozgan province
47 – Damavand Petrochemical in Bushehr province
48 – Dena Petrochemical Plant in Bushehr province
49 – D-Polymer Company in Petrochemical Industries in Bushehr province
50 – Butia Steel in Kerman province
51 – Pima Ney Sazeh Farafan Qeshm Co. in Hormozgan province
52 – Bid Boland 2 Mahshahr Project in Khuzestan province
53 – Overhaul Strike 15 and 16 in Tehran province
54 – Jahrom Combined Cycle Power Plant Workers in Fars province
55 – Darya Sahel Jofeir Company in Bushehr province
56 – Radiograph section of Bidkhoon Kargaran Power Plant in Bushehr province
57 – Bandar Abbas No. 5 Pumphouse in Hormozgan province
58 – Zolal Contractor Co. in Isfahan province
59 – Various sections of Jahan Pars in Ilam province
60 – Pishro Sanat Company in Adish Petroleum Refinery in Hormozgan province
61 – ODCC Oil Refinery in Isfahan province