"We are on strike". Matos Fernandes says he does not understand complaints from officials of REPA posts – Jornal Económico

The Environment Minister said today that he does not understand the complaints of those responsible for filling stations that are part of the Emergency Network of Gas Stations (REPA), noting that the country is going on strike.

"I can't understand what the damage they may be having when compared to the common positions because we are on strike," said João Pedro Matos Fernandes, at a press conference held today at the headquarters of the National Energy Sector in Lisbon .

The National Association of Fuel Dealers (ANAREC) said on Wednesday that it is concerned about rising costs and falling revenues for its members due to the strike by drivers of hazardous materials and goods.

In a statement, ANAREC indicated that it has been monitoring the effects of the strike on fuel, liquid and gase dealers, having received complaints from its members that are part of REPA.

Member constraints affect “in particular those who have exclusive posts and who can only provide supplies to priority entities”.

"Belonging to the REPA network is the guarantee that you have supplies above the guarantees that can be given to normal posts," said the minister, stressing that this is not a business like the others.

"We are on strike and this is a clear necessity for the whole of the country, the law makes it clear that who owns a gas station does not have a completely normal business in that it takes particular responsibility in a vital sector," he argued.

Reiterating not understanding the complaints, Matos Fernandes recalled that the comparisons of those responsible for gas stations can not be made with what happened on August 15 last year.

"If they are comparing with August 15 last year, when there was no strike, they will eventually be selling less fuel, but it seems to me that the comparison should be made is with the other gas stations," he said.

The minister also said that today, the REPA numbers “are in line with yesterday's [quarta-feira]”, With general stocks at about half of the total (51.3%).

According to ANAREC, most of its companies associated with REPA posts exclusive to priority entities "have reported that they are mostly full of deposits, and with much lower sales than usual."

"In fact, they are prevented from selling fuel to the general public, and report that priority entities also continue to refuel their vehicles at other filling stations, including outside REPA," the association adds.

ANAREC considers members' reports “worrying” because the costs they have to keep the posts in operation remain the same, or even increase, and revenues are decreasing.

The civil requisition of the striking drivers aims to ensure the supply of REPA, airports, stations served by the Sines refinery and autonomous natural gas units.

From Saturday until 23:59 of 21 August, Portugal is in a situation of energy crisis, decreed by the Government due to this strike, which led to the constitution of REPA, with 54 priority posts and 320 public access.

For the duration of the strike, light vehicles may only fill a maximum of 25 liters of fuel in non-REPA stations and 15 liters in non-REPA emergency stations.

The strike was called by the National Union of Hazardous Material Drivers (SNMMP) and the Independent Union of Freight Drivers (SIMM), with the aim of claiming from the National Association of Public Road Hauliers (Antram) compliance with the signed agreement. in May, which foresees a wage increase.

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