There has been talk of extending the strikes, and threats were made at the weekend to down tools at the Poertollano oil refinery. Observers saw a danger of a complete industrial shut-down by the end of May.
Strike negotiations have been proceeding slowly. The decision to stop work also came as a result of the snail-like pace at which top-level decisions are taken.
Wage agreements had actually been concluded between managements and workers in the syndicates—the joint organisations of government officials, employers and workers which act as a substitute for trade unions. But these agreements have to be ratified by