According to news from the Southeast Express, the Fujian Branch of the China National Petroleum Corporation has asked its employees to forgo their previous seniority with the company when renewing their labor contracts.
It is learned that CNPC Fujian issued a notice in February which said that the company would not renew labor contracts with employees unless they were willing to given up their previous seniority with the company. In addition, the company also asked the employees to sign a supplementary agreement which stated that the employees should be willing to sign a fixed term labor contract with the company and give up their seniority and other related benefits earned before December 31, 2008. What's more, the company asked the employees to promise not to request the company to sign a non-fixed term labor contract with them for ten years. It is learned that more than 3,000 employees of the company face the dilemma: to give up their seniority or to be dismissed by the company, including some who have already worked for ten years in the company and are supposed to sign a non-fixed term labor contract with the company this year under China's new Labor Contract Law.
According to the Labor Contract Law in China, companies must sign a non-fixed term labor contract with an employee who has worked for the company for ten years or that has signed two consecutive labor contracts with the company.
Ye Jiying, a person in charge of CNPC Fujian's legal affairs, told the media that the company's notice was unacceptable to most workers. Ye said that he himself also objected to this notice and as a result he had not been paid any salary or designated any duties. Ye said he had applied for labor arbitration and he hoped the result of the arbitration will bring new hope to the employees concerned.
It is learned that CNPC Fujian has been operating in Fujian for a decade. To date, it has had more than 3,000 employees, including 30 so-called formal employees and 3,300 socially-hired employees.
So far, there has been no comment from CNPC Fujian.