August 25, 2011 / 10:29 AM / in 6 years

Workers strike at Exxon's Papua New Guinea LNG site

PERTH, Aug 25 (Reuters) - Workers at Exxonmobil’s Papua New Guinea PNG LNG plant site have been on strike since Monday, the company said on Thursday, but said it does not expect the action to delay the $15 billion project.

“We have been making quite good progress on the project. In this particular case, we’re confident that we will have a speedy resolution,” Exxon spokeswoman Rebecca Arnold said.

The workers on strike are employed by Laba Holdings, an umbrella landowner company for the four villages impacted by the LNG plant site development, Arnold said.

Laba Holdings did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

As many as 100 workers, mostly from surrounding villages, are on strike after one of Laba Holdings’ sub-contractors, Red Sea Housing, failed to address worker demands for higher pay, the Australian Associated Press (AAP) said in a report on Thursday.

The workers make A$1.40($1.47) an hour, according to AAP.

Arnold said Exxon has a workers’ committee process through which the workers can air their grievances.

“We have been working through that process to engage with the workforce,” Arnold said.

The PNG LNG project, which is expected to produce 6.6 million tonnes per annum and come online in 2014, is a joint venture between Exxon Mobil, Oil Search , Santos , Japan’s JX Nippon Oil and Gas Exploration, a unit of JX Holdings , and the Papua New Guinea government. ($1 = 0.953 Australian Dollars) (Reporting by Rebekah Kebede; Editing by Michael Urquhart)

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