French Strikes: Fuel Supply Improving, But Crisis Not Over

French Strikes: Fuel Supply Improving, But Crisis Not Over

In France, the strikes at oil refineries as part of an ongoing standoff with the government over labour reforms are affecting the supply, The Guardian reported. According to reports from UK’s motoring organisations RAC, more than half the country’s 10,250 filling stations running were low on stocks, Motoring Research added.

However, fuel shortages sparked by days of nationwide refinery strikes and blockades are easing  after several fuel depots were liberated by police. On his side, Transport Minister, Alain Vidalies, told journalists that although “the situation is getting better”, the crisis wasn’t over, Reuters reported.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Manuel Valls was quoted as saying he was ready to ride out protests at ports and fuel depots by strikers opposing labour reform plans.

The powerful CGT and other French unions are fighting the government’s attempt to reform the French labor market, saying the new measures will only increase unemployment and weaken job security, France24 wrote.

Valls said he would not withdraw the text of the reform, which could make it easier for firms to hire and fire. The government believe the reform is crucial to fight unemployment which is at above 10% of the workforce.

The text may be modified when it goes to the upper house of parliament for approval, Valls said. But the government would not go back on core parts of the reform such as removing obstacles for hiring for small and mid-sized companies.



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