Emmanuel Macron calls for “responsibility”

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« Do not panic “: President Emmanuel Macron called on Friday, October 7 motorists to ” calm ” and oil groups and unions at the “ responsibility about the strikes that have been causing serious fuel supply problems for several days, particularly at TotalEnergies

« I really want to have a message here (…) of call for calm “, declared the president at the end of an informal European summit in Prague. ” I also call each and everyone to responsibility. (…) All wage demands are legitimate, but they must not prevent each other from living and being able to circulate ».

A little earlier, Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne had called “ responsible for the management and employee representatives of these companies » so that the wage negotiations succeed, following an intervention in Bordeaux, during the Convention of the intermunicipalities of France.

« I call on the companies concerned, which for the most part still have good results, to also consider requests for salary increases “, had previously declared Olivia Grégoire, Minister Delegate for Small and Medium Enterprises, on France Info, without mentioning TotalEnergies by name and its 10.6 billion dollars of profit in the first half.

Exceptional results

CEO Patrick Pouyanné did not speak publicly on the strikebut in an internal group video on Tuesday, he acknowledged that “ the company’s results are exceptional in 2022 and we will not forget you ».

« All employees, all our colleagues will receive their just reward on their payslip before the end of the year “, promised Patrick Pouyanné, assuring them that they were” priority in sharing prosperity ».

While the CGT is calling for a 10% increase in 2022 – 7% for inflation, 3% for “ wealth sharing -, management has recalled from the start that it has granted salary measures representing an average increase of 3.5% in 2022 and refers to a negotiation session scheduled for November 15… for salaries for 2023. news, she seemed adamant about that schedule.

TotalEnergies largest refinery, near the Havre (Seine-Maritime), is at a standstill. Other sites of the group are on strike. And the two French refineries of the American Esso-ExxonMobil are also stopped, in both cases at the call of the CGT, in order to obtain a wage increase.

Tankers will be exceptionally authorized to circulate on Sunday to deliver the stations.

At the French oil company, in addition to its Normandy refinery, the strikers were massively mobilized at the Flanders fuel depot, near Dunkirk (North), at the ” bio-refineries “La Mède (Bouches-du-Rhône) and at the Grandpuits fuel depot (Seine-et-Marne) in particular, to limit the outflow of petroleum products as much as possible, according to the CGT.

At the Feyzin refinery (Rhône), there were “ between 80 and 100% strikers in the strategic shipping department, Pedro Afonso (CGT) told AFP.

Blockades by strikers lead to lower fuel deliveries, so petrol stations are more often out of stocks of petrol or diesel. TotalEnergies manages almost a third of French stations.

19% of service stations in difficulty

But the group also puts the disturbances on the account of the success of the discount at the pump of 20 centimes which it grants since September 1, in addition to the rebate of the State of 30 centimes.

At 1 p.m., Friday, 19 % des stations-service ” in France ” experienced difficulties with at least one product “, according to an updated point from the Ministry of Energy Transition.

The behavior of some motorists has prompted the state to ban the sale and purchase of fuel in jerry cans, particularly in certain departments of Hauts-de-France, where stations have been stormed.

The Minister for Energy Transition, Agnès Pannier-Runacher, admitted, after a meeting with prefects in Arras, that the tensions were “ important in the Pas-de-Calais and the North, but assured that the situation was improving. In Pas-de-Calais, 52% of stations had, according to her, “ difficulties Thursday and 42% today. In the North, it was 47% Thursday and 43% Friday.

She underlined that the government had set up fuel transport from Belgium and by boat via the port of Rouen and recalled that the use of the strategic stocks of the State was activated punctually.

For the regional prefect, Georges-François Leclerc, the return to normal is “ difficult to predict ». « It’s all about logistics. Logistics can take a little time. »

(With AFP)

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