The increase of $400 pesos in the price of gasoline for 2023 has taxi drivers in Colombia quite dissatisfied. So much so, that Hugo Ospina, leader of the union, assured that do not rule out the possibility of going on strike in the coming days.
In an interview with Blu Radio, Ospina said that “the president’s commitment was that he would gradually raise 200 pesos and suddenly he began to raise $400. We don’t know if the next month it will be $600 and the next month it will be $1000”.
The union leader also explained that one of the factors that, in his opinion, increases the price of gasoline is the value of ethanol, which is blended with gasoline.
“How is it possible that today a gallon of ethanol costs us 23 thousand pesos. (…) Take away the 10% or 12% that they put in ethanol from a gallon of gasoline, it gives you approximately $2,400,” he stated.
The rise in fuel affects us in such a way that it makes it impossible for us to work in our trade
Also, he described as a “carretazo” the “extra cost in tolls” that “bringing the crude in large trucks” would generate.
“They got rid of the tankers and put the pipelines with the Colombian taxes to take the fuel directly to the refineries and, now, they come to tell us that the gallon of gasoline has gone up,” they added.
On the other hand, Alejandro Grimaldo, a taxi driver from the city of Bogotá, told RCN Radio that the increase makes his work difficult, especially in the number of hours he has to work to meet the quota.
“The rise in fuel affects us in such a way that it makes it impossible for us to work in our trade, in such a way that everything we have to do increases by 200%, starting with the workload, because we have to work shifts 10, 12 or 15 hours to meet the quota to answer for the car”, considerable.
They evaluate going on strike
Ospina assured on Blu Radio that they do not rule out the possibility of a national strike to show their disagreement with the new prices, which It’s not just taxi drivers but it extends to other unions, such as cargo workers.
“We are going to talk to our comrades about the reasons that gave rise to the strike call and if their arguments do not convince us, if they convince us to go sit down with the government, we will go on strike,” Ospina added.