In order to stop a two-week long truckers strike, Colombia’s government has offered to freeze fuel prices. According to the truckers this is a “band-aid solution.”
The President of the Association of Colombian Truckers told Caracol Radio that the government proposal is an inadequate response to the problems faced by the sector and the truckers refuse to lift their strike.
The government raised the price of fuel by 6% in February, resulting in a strike by the truckers that have long complained the fuel prices are killing their livelihood.
After no subsequent reduction in fuel costs, the truckers decided to resume demonstrations two weeks ago when numerous sectors began massive anti-government strikes.
“We are asking for a review of the pricing formula,” said Alberto Arango. “We need a freight that is competitive, and reducing the price of fuel is a necessity.”
In order to do this, the truckers propose the government explores ways to refine and locally sell domestically pumped crude oil instead of exporting the oil to subsequently import refined fuel.
The anti-government strikes, which started as a rural peasant uprising and spread to miners, teachers, medical professionals, truckers and students reached its 13th day on Sunday.
While President Juan Manuel Santos on Saturday announced a grand national pact aimed at fixing Colombia’s agricultural sector, no agreements have been reached with the truckers.