GERMANS SET TO RESUME
IG METALL NEGOTIATIONS
FRANKFURT, Germany - As the German engineering strike escalated this week, employers said they were prepared to resume talks with the IG Metall union but stopped short of making a pay offer to lure the union back to the table.
With the strike spreading to 33 factories in the southern state of Bavaria, Monika Nebe, a spokeswoman for the Bavarian engineering employers' association, said a concrete pay offer would be made if IG Metall returned to talks.
Negotiations collapsed last week after employers failed to respond to the union's 6 percent wage claim, insisting that IG Metall discuss cost-cutting measures and delay the introduction of the shorter, 35-hour working week.
SUN REFINING BOOSTS
NY OIL PRICE 10 POINTS
NEW YORK - Sun Refining and Marketing Thursday increased its barge heating oil price to New York harbor clients by decreasing its discount to the futures contract by 10 points to 20 points below the April Nymex, company customers confirmed.
That price is applicable to purchases through March 10.
Sun did not change its low-sulfur diesel fuel, which remains set at 5 points below the Nymex price.
USDA SEEKS OPINIONS
ON ENGINEERED CORN
WASHINGTON - The U.S. Department of Agriculture Thursday asked the public to help it decide whether to allow a chemical company freedom to produce genetically engineered corn.
Ciba Seeds, a division of Ciba-Geigy Corp., wants to produce the corn, Event 176 Corn, without involving the USDA, the department said in a statement.
The USDA seeks comments by April 24 as to whether or not it should continue to test Ciba Seeds' corn to ensure it is free of plant pests.
WINNIPEG TEAM TO REDO
CANOLA FUTURES CONTRACT
WINNIPEG, Manitoba - The Winnipeg Commodity Exchange has formed a team to revamp and modernize its canola futures contract, the WCE announced Wednesday.
Drawing from all segments of the canola industry, the WCE's task force has a job to ensure efficient pricing and risk-shifting mechanisms are being used for the canola contract, according to a WCE press statement.
The task force will complete deliberations and make recommendations to the WCE's board of governors by mid-April, it said.