Galp Energia learned some “lessons” after the decision to close the Matosinhos refinery, specifically about how it can better interact with workers to avoid a backlash, admitted Andy Brown, the company’s CEO.
“We’ve really learned some lessons. How could we have been more involved, and how could we have done that so we didn’t get the backlash that we did”In an interview with Lusa during the Lisbon Web Summit, Brown said,
On December 21, 2020, Galp announced the closure of the refinery to 1,600 workers, after it closed the last production unit on April 30, following the decision to focus operations at Sines.
Prime Minister Antonio Costa, on September 19, during the election campaign of local authorities, sharply criticized Galb over the decision to close the refinery, saying “everyone who behaves like this should learn a lesson”.
Brown emphasized that the option to close the refinery was a very difficult decision made by the previous Executive Committee, noting that the unit lost 800 million euros between 2005 and 2020.
“For the group and for the country, it is no longer a viable refinery, and Galp worked hard to see if there were technical solutions for that and at the end of last year, especially after a very difficult year with no one on the roads. With oil prices so low, it was very difficult Galp had to make that decision.”, He said.
“I think we will continue to learn and improve, but the decision, no one doubts that it was a decision to make”, confirmed.
The British director explained that the fact that the announcement was made just before Christmas is linked to corporate law, once there is a decision subject to disclosure, the “board” has to disclose.
“There are some lessons to be learned from this. What we want is to make sure that as we move forward, as we go through the trust transition process, and the change in our portfolio, we have to think deeply about the consequences and unintended consequences and that is something I work a lot on”, he added.
Brown said Galp wants to make Matosinhos “a future center of innovation that we’ll be proud of, because it’s a fantastic property.”
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