UK retailer Tesco faces £4 billion claim over unequal pay for women

Lawyers argue that Tesco’s in-store employees, who are largely women, are paid far less than those in the male-dominated distribution centers, even though their work is of equal value to the company.
Updated 07 February 2018
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UK retailer Tesco faces £4 billion claim over unequal pay for women

LONDON: British supermarket chain Tesco is facing legal claims that it is paying women less than men for work of equal value, in a case that lawyers estimate could ultimately cost it as much as £4 billion (SR20.9 billion) in compensation payments.
Law firm Leigh Day said Wednesday it has begun filing claims with the employee conciliation service Acas on behalf of 100 women, but the case could eventually apply to more than 200,000 Tesco workers.
“We believe an inherent bias has allowed store workers to be underpaid for many years,” said Paula Lee of Leigh Day. “In terms of equal worth to the company there really should be no argument that workers in stores, compared to those working in distribution centers, contribute at least equal value to the vast profits made by Tesco.”
The lawyers argue that in-store employees, who are largely women, are paid far less than those in the male-dominated distribution centers, even though their work is of equal value to the company.
Tesco said it had not yet seen the claim, but that it works hard “to make sure all our colleagues are paid fairly and equally for the jobs they do.”


Japan’s last imports of Iranian oil could be in October

Updated 16 min 17 sec ago
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Japan’s last imports of Iranian oil could be in October

  • US President Donald Trump’s administration has demanded nations cut all their imports of Iranian oil from November
  • Japan’s largest banks had already said they would stop handling all Iran-related transactions to meet the November deadline

TOKYO: Japanese oil refiners will likely stop loading Iranian crude by mid-September with final shipments arriving in the first half of October, the head of the nation’s oil refiners association said on Thursday, as the US pressures countries to halt such imports.
US President Donald Trump’s administration has demanded nations cut all their imports of Iranian oil from November as it reimposes sanctions over Tehran’s nuclear program.
Although it has said that some allies who are particularly reliant on Iranian supplies may be granted waivers that would give them more time to wind down shipments.
“Japanese oil refiners have been making preparations for lifting plans on the assumption that US sanctions are to be applied,” the president of the Petroleum Association of Japan (PAJ), Takashi Tsukioka, said.
“Considering that payment is to be finished by end of October, it is important that the refiners would finish loading (Iranian oil) before mid-September.”
Tsukioka added that the industry is asking the Japanese government to push to maintain current levels of Iranian imports in talks with the United States. But a Japanese government source, who declined to be identified, said winning a waiver was seen as “difficult.”
PAJ had said last month that Japanese refiners would likely stop importing from Iran, but on Thursday gave more details on potential timings.
Many refiners in Japan, the world’s fourth-biggest oil importer, say they are resigned to completely halting imports from one of their historically important suppliers, unlike during a previous round of sanctions when they substantially reduced imports from the Middle Eastern country.
Three industry sources familiar with the matter said shipping companies had told refiners in Japan that they would stop carrying oil cargoes from Iran. The sources declined to be identified as they were not authorized to speak with media.
That would follow similar announcements by the world’s biggest shipping companies including A.P. Moller-Maersk of Denmark.
Unlike Japan, China and some countries in Europe have significantly raised purchases following the lifting of previous sanctions.
“It would be unreasonable for (Japanese refining) industry to be influenced similarly by such countries,” said Tsukioka, who also serves as chairman of Japan’s second-biggest refiner, Idemitsu Kosan.
Japan’s largest banks had already said they would stop handling all Iran-related transactions to meet the November deadline set by Trump, Reuters reported last week.
Japanese refiners are looking to secure alternative supplies from the Middle East and the US among others, industry sources have said.
Japan last year imported 172,216 barrels per day of Iranian crude, down 24.2 percent from a year earlier, with Iranian oil accounting for 5.3 percent of the nation’s total imports.