Argentine agribusiness workers continue on strike affecting international companies

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By Hugh Bronstein and Maximilian Heath

BUENOS AIRES, Oct 14 (Reuters) – An Argentine oil workers union held on Wednesday its second consecutive day of a strike demanding higher wages, which affected the milling of international companies Cargill, Bunge and Louis Dreyfus, as well as the from major local companies.

The measure of the Federation of Workers of the Oleaginous Industrial Complex is for an indefinite period of time, but it did not impact the region north of Rosario, where the bulk of Argentina’s milling activity is concentrated, because the workers there are affiliated with another guild.

The Federation’s general secretary, Daniel Yofra, told Reuters that “the force measure is still underway”, affecting international agro-export companies, and that the national government had not communicated with them.

A major agribusiness source confirmed to Reuters that the main companies in the sector are affected by the protest.

The Argentine government tends to try to prevent the prolongation of labor disputes in the agro-export sector, key to the arrival of the foreign exchange that the country so badly needs after two years of recession and in the midst of a crisis.

According to Yofra, the strike also affected the milling of local companies Aceitera General Deheza and Molinos Agro. Argentina is the main international exporter of soybean oil and flour.

In September, a union of grain port technical workers held a 24-hour strike that interrupted shipments at many terminals in the country. However, the union reached a partial agreement with the companies following the intervention of the Ministry of Labor in the negotiations.

(Reporting by Hugh Bronstein and Maximilian Heath; Edited by Nicolás Misculin)

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