dockers, refiners and electricians on strike Thursday, the CGT wants to intensify the protest

Among electricians and gas producers, production cuts in nuclear power plants and dams are to be expected from Thursday. ERIC GAILLARD / REUTERS

Strikers in the energy sector are calling for the movement to be hardened and intend to increase targeted cuts in particular.

Go get even more strikers“: before the national day of January 31 against the pension reform, the CGT calls to resume the strike from Thursday and Friday in the refineries, the power stations but also the ports and the docks. Emmanuel Macron’s reform, which all the unions oppose and which will arrive in Parliament on Monday, would lead to the abolition of special regimes at EDF or Engie. Their employees, for example, would also be forced, in the long term, to wait until they are 64 to receive their retirement.

On January 31, at the call of all the unions, the strike will affect all sectors: schools, civil servants, transport, services… But in energy, the CGT wants to show its muscles, and organizes additional strikes. Among electricians and gas producers, production cuts in nuclear power plants and dams are to be expected from Thursday, warns Fabrice Coudour, federal secretary of the FNME-CGT, but they should not cause power cuts for the general public, as they are supervised by the manager of the high and very high voltage lines RTE.

The CGT wishesget even more strikers for the 31st and show that we master the work tool», explains Fabrice Coudour. On the menu of these two days of mobilization, also actions “positive“, à la Robin des Bois: free, price reductions, passage in reduced hours and restorations of current for cut households are to be expected, in order to counterbalance the criticisms addressed after the announcement of “targeted cuts“, in particular against elected officials favorable to the reform.

However, as of Wednesday, cuts took place on wind and solar farms in the Montluçon sector, claimed by the CGT. As always, Enedis will file a complaint. “We do not want (any) blockages that would be penalizing for all French people and we do not accept any threats“, moreover declared Wednesday the Minister of Labor Olivier Dussopt before the Senate, speaking of “offense» more than «political or militant action“.

SEE ALSO – Transport, schools, ski resorts…: what to expect for the January 31 strike?

A movement “a little harder»

The CGT oil nevertheless wishesa slightly harder movementsaid Thierry Defresne, CGT secretary of the TotalEnergies Europe committee. “I don’t like the term blocking, but we think that it takes a generalization of the strike to affect the economy“, added Thierry Defresne, who sees this as the only way to do it”back down the government», unlike 24-hour movements spaced out in time.

In the refineries, the stoppage of the installations is not on the agenda, but, as during the strike of January 19, the shipments of fuels will be blocked towards the depots, with the usual watchword: “nothing goes in, nothing comes out“. Oil companies are also planning local actions with port infrastructure employees, with whom joint events could be organised.

The CGT federation of Ports and Docks has indeed called for a 24-hour strike on Thursday, during which it “calls on dock workers and port workers to amplify the modalities of action“. For the rest, the CGT Petrole evokes a new day of action which would stick to January 31, the day before or the day after. “This dynamic that we need and that for the moment the inter-union does not offer, we are in the process of creating it“, estimates Thierry Defresne, who hopes that the employees will follow this impulse.


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