Over 130 construction workers employed by various contractors on the Valero oil refinery in Pembrokeshire have secured a minimum of an 11 per cent increase in wages.

Strike action

The workers who are members of Unite, the UK’s leading union, and employed under the terms of the National Agreement for the Engineering Construction Industry (NAECI), took prolonged strike action late last year in pursuit of an increase in bonus payments, to offset soaring inflation rates.

Under the agreement they have secured an increase in bonus payments worth £2.06 an hour. For a skilled worker this works out as a pay increase of 10.6 per cent, while for the lowest paid apprentices the increase is worth 24.5 per cent.

Important victory

Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said: “This was an important victory for our members employed at Valero. They demonstrated that by being prepared to take strike action and acting in unity, the employers found the money for a significant improvement in their wages.

“This is further evidence that Unite’s forensic focus on jobs, pay and conditions is delivering substantial financial benefits for members.”

Additional agreement

In addition, workers were unhappy that the bonus was not normally paid during outages and slowdowns, however the employers have agreed to negotiate a new supplementary agreement to cover such events.

While the Valero dispute has been concluded, there are ongoing national negotiations to resolve similar dispute affecting other NAECI sites. If those talks decide a higher bonus payment should be made, than the Valero workforce will receive the higher amount.


Unite regional officer Allan Card said: “This victory would not have been possible without the dedication and commitment of Unite’s reps and members. By being so disciplined and united, the employer had no option but to enter into negotiations and offer a fair settlement.”


Notes to editors

Shocking Scrooge-like actions by contractors in Pembrokeshire Valero dispute

For media enquiries ONLY please contact Unite senior communications officer Barckley Sumner on 07802 329235 or 0203 371 2067.

Email: [email protected]

Unite is the UK and Ireland’s leading union fighting to protect and advance jobs, pay and conditions for members working across all sectors of the economy. The general secretary is Sharon Graham.