Despite growing pressure from the Government, the strike for TotalEnergies wages, which has lasted 15 days and is causing shortages in more than a third of service stations in France, was renewed from Monday to Tuesday and directly extended to fifteen motorway service stations of the Argedis network, a subsidiary of TotalEnergies. An emergency meeting with several ministers is organized this Monday evening in Matignon.
The movement expands
Despite repeated calls from the government to negotiate wages and end the blockades, the CGT and TotalEnergies management have been unable to reach an agreement. The strike also continues in the two French refineries of Esso-ExxonMobil, after a meeting with the management described as “inconclusive” by Christophe Aubert, central union representative of the CGT. It has even caused a sensation at fifteen motorway service stations in the Argedis network, a subsidiary of TotalEnergies.
At 6:00 p.m. on Monday, 29.4% of service stations were in difficulty nationwide (compared to 29.7% at 3:00 p.m. on Sunday), said the Minister for the Energy Transition, Agnès Pannier- Runacher. “If you see a slight improvement in Hauts-de-France, going from 54.8% yesterday to 48.4% today, and in Île-de-France, going from 44.9% yesterday to 33.9% today, other difficulties appear in the territory, even in areas that are not affected by the current social movement such as the Atlantic coast”, indicates the ministry in a press release.
According to Thierry Defresne, secretary of the CGT of the European committee TotalEnergies, 15 service stations in the Argedis network “will be closed” on Tuesday. The stations of Paisy (A6, Rhône), Montluel (Ain), Ceignes (A40 motorway, Ain), Lançon-Provence (A7, Bouches-du-Rhône), will be particularly affected, as well as others in the Parisian region, near of Rouen and in the Strasbourg region.
Three days after speaking from Prague, Emmanuel Macron called again on Monday the leadership of the oil groups and the unions to “responsibility”. “The blockade is not a way of negotiating”, judged the president, wishing “that a solution be found”, and “a quick conclusion of the negotiations”. “I call on all the companies involved and the employees to have a spirit of responsibility”, he added, during a trip to Château-Gontier (Mayenne).
“The salary negotiations are all legitimate and it is not for me to judge. But they (the parties) must find a conclusion so that it is not our compatriots who are the victims”, according to him. Because, he continued, “we should not be in a country where we consider that it is up to the government to do everything.” “I hear you every day say we need social dialogue, we need social dialogue » and « it is a bit easy to say that, as soon as there is a problem, it is the fault of the President of the Republic, the Prime Minister or the ministers ».
“I have asked the prime minister and the relevant ministers to discuss with the concerned officials, companies and unions,” he added, believing that the government “has done well to put pressure on all actors.”
Borne and four ministers meet urgently
At 9:00 p.m. sharp, Elisabeth Borne brings together four ministers to “take stock of the state of the discussions” between companies and unions. “I hope that the situation recovers as soon as possible,” the prime minister told the media from Algiers, where she was traveling accompanied by a delegation of 15 ministers.
Asked about the possibility of requisitions to ensure supply, the head of government replied that “she would take stock this afternoon of the status of the discussions and the way in which we can assure the French that there will be replacement of the service stations.” as quickly as possible “.“ It is in the negotiation (…) that we must be able to find a solution, and not by blocking the country and the French ”, she also pleaded.