Chamber condemns OWTU's "irresponsible" call to mobilise

The Chamber of Industry and Commerce is calling on citizens all Petrotrin stakeholders to adopt a level-headed approach and work collaboratively for a successful way forward.

The Chamber said in a statement Monday that it deems the call by the president of the Oilfields Workers Trade Union (OWTU), a retrograde step that may simply serve to undermine the economy, and ultimately harm the very persons it is intended to help.

"The possible fallout could very well serve to intensify already trying times for all who share the burden - including the more vulnerable among us," the Chamber said.

It continued: "At a time when our country is grappling with challenging economic conditions, such rhetoric inciting citizens to mobilise can only be described as irresponsible. It is also our understanding that such action is contrary to the Industrial Relations Act. Instead of calls for disruptive activity, the T&T Chamber is of the view that there needs to be a commitment to do whatever it takes to restore our national competitiveness and growth."

The Chamber said the country has been aware of the situation with Petrotrin for several years now and that citizens now stand at a crossroads where they can neither sustain the massive debt nor the ongoing losses of the refinery operations.

"It is a time for forward-looking approaches; the world is changing and we need to place greater emphasis on where we need to be for a sustainable economy," the Chamber added.

It says it subscribes fully to the ideals of constructive dialogue as established through the National Tripartite Advisory Council (NTAC).

"Anything less", it said, "would be counter-productive to securing a better future for all of us who live and work in Trinidad and Tobago."

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