7,000 Kuwait Oil Workers on Strike

7,000 Kuwait Oil Workers  on Strike7,000 Kuwait Oil Workers  on Strike

More than 7,000 oil workers in Kuwait have begun an open-ended strike to protest government plans to cut wages and benefits. “The overall number of workers exceeds 13,000, and here we have 7,000 [taking part in the strike],” the oil workers union chief, Saif al-Qahtani, was quoted as saying by TASS. He added that the union is aiming to reach their goals by halting output. Hit by the sharp nosedive in world crude prices, the Kuwaiti government is considering a new payroll scheme for industry employees. If introduced, it will include the country's 20,000 oil workers, meaning an automatic cut in their wages, benefits and incentives. This is while the OPEC member’s production dropped by nearly 60% to 1.1 million barrels a day, Saad al-Azmi, deputy chief executive for finance and spokesman of Kuwait Oil Company, said on Sunday when workers walked off the job. Kuwait is among Middle Eastern oil producers that are cutting spending and benefits to plug holes that the oil-price drop of nearly 30% in the past year has punched in government budgets.