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UKPIA response to Unite’s letter to the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change

Press Release

28 March 2012

UKPIA, the trade association representing the main oil refining and marketing companies in the UK, notes the content of the letter sent yesterday by Unite to the Secretary of State for Energy, outlining issues relating to the terms of conditions of employment of their members by some haulage contractors. The letter also raised concerns about safety and training of drivers engaged in making fuel deliveries.

UKPIA, as well as haulage companies working in our industry, has already provided clear and detailed commentary on our members’ thorough and comprehensive approach to safety standards for road tanker operations as they are currently applied by UKPIA members (summarised in UKPIA’s press release of 27th March). The suggestions of compromised safety in this area are without foundation.

UKPIA and its members give high priority to safety issues within the industry. As well as its own active committees, UKPIA promotes the work of and participates in a number of industry and cross-sector groups established to improve safety and share best practice.

Some other areas covered in the Unite letter (training, pension provision, rates of pay, working hours, disciplinary procedures, equal opportunities etc.) are clearly matters to be addressed between employers in the sector and their employees. The majority of UKPIA’s members do not employ drivers and therefore cannot engage with employee representatives on matters over which they have no jurisdiction or control.


Enquiries to: Nick Vandervell, UKPIA Tel. 020 7269 7604

Notes to editors:

  1. UKPIA represents nine oil refining and marketing companies that operate 7 of the 8 major oil refineries in the UK and source close to 90% of the transport fuels used. The UK refineries processed 73 million tonnes of crude oil and produced 75.4 million tonnes of refined products in 2010 (Source: DECC- DUKES data). UKPIA members also own around 1,900 of the 8,700 filling stations in the UK.
  2. An outline of the major challenges facing the UK oil refining sector are set out in UKPIA’s recent publication “ Fuelling the UK’s future- the role of our refining and downstream oil industry”, as well as in the Briefing Paper “Distribution and Marketing in the downstream oil industry”. See

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