A Gazette notification has been issued last night declaring the storage and distribution of fuel as an essential service.
All staff involved in petroleum distribution must report to work with immediate effect as it is now an essential service.
Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) employees who fail to report to work with immediate effect will be considered as having vacated their posts, the Government Information Department said.
Meanwhile tri-forces and police personnel entered the Kolonnawa and Muthurajawela fuel storage terminals this morning to ensure security and distribute fuel.
Military spokesman Brigadier Roshan Seneviratne said that security forces personnel entered the Kolonnawa terminal and removed the employees engaged in the strike from the location and ensured the safety of those who are not supporting the union action.
However, striking CPC employees are still protesting in front of the Kolonnawa terminal.
Fuel transporting bowsers have been instructed to report to storage facilities in Kolonnawa and Muthurajawela as distribution has resumed.
The military spokesman said that distribution will commence as security has been ensured in Muthurajawela and Kolonnawa terminals.
The move comes in the wake of the strike action launched by trade unions of the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) from midnight on Monday (July 24).
The strike is based on three demands including the acquisition of Trincomalee Petroleum tanks complex to the CPC, acquisition of Hambantota Port Tanks Complex to CPC and modernization of the Sapugaskanda Oil Refinery.
Ceylon Petroleum Corporation Trade Unions Collective spokesman Bandula Saman Kumara said that their strike will continue no matter what obstacles are put before them.