Paris – Car avalanches are increasing in front of gas stations across France – or the pumps are completely deserted. A national dispute in the refineries is causing fuel shortages and high prices!
After about two weeks of strikes, there are now jams at about a third of French petrol stations, drivers queuing, huddling or driving through cities for hours in search of fuel.
People can no longer drive to work, shop or take their children to school. Some of the delivery trucks could no longer be used by craftspeople due to a lack of fuel and nursing home staff had to cancel appointments. Now there is concern that bus services and farmers will also be disrupted. To the anger of motorists, some petrol stations raised their prices sharply.
More than 60 percent of France’s refining capacity will be shut down due to the strikes, driving up diesel prices and forcing the country to increase fuel imports.
Six out of seven refineries in the country have been affected by the strikes, and the CGT union wants to pay a 10 per cent wage increase at the refiners of energy group Total.
► So the French government is now taking drastic measures. Government spokesman Olivier Veran said in Paris that Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne has ordered the hiring of necessary staff at the Port Jerome refinery in Normandy on Wednesday. “The effects of the labor conflict have become unbearable for many French people.”
The government spokesman said that employees’ commitment to service should allow tanker trucks to be filled at refineries.
If deliveries go back to gas stations again, the situation may return to normal in a few days. The majority of the unions involved refuse to strike, which is one of the reasons for state intervention.