Staff imports prompt anger

The union representing metalworkers in northern Greece yesterday complained to the Labor and Macedonia-Thrace ministries about the decision by an Athens-based firm to import 150 Belarussian employees for a project in Thessaloniki. The development comes just two weeks after thousands of British workers at Total’s Lindsey Oil Refinery walked out over the use of foreign contractors for a multimillion-euro building project. Echoing British unionists, a spokesman for Greek workers expressed outrage. «With unemployment in our sector at 20 percent and factories closing down, the firm chooses to import Belarussian workers,» he said. The 88-million-euro project, to construct tanks for the production of low-sulfur fuel, was contracted out by Hellenic Petroleum which yesterday said it would look into the matter and that «all legal commitments would be honored.»