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TotalEnergies shuts down France’s largest refinery over strike

Paris, France | Xinhua | French multinational energy and petroleum company TotalEnergies has started to shut down the country’s largest refinery in the Normandy region as a result of a strike over wage demands, the French daily Le Figaro reported on Wednesday.

“The discontent is so strong in Normandy that the strikers demanded this morning the shutdown procedures of the largest refinery in France,” Thierry Defresne, General Confederation of Labour (CGT) secretary of the European Enterprise Committee of TotalEnergies, said.

According to Le Figaro, the shutdown does not jeopardize the supply of service stations in the short term even if the plant represents 22 percent of France’s refining capacity.

TotalEnergies said it has stocks that can last between 20 days and one month in addition to the country’s strategic stocks, Le Figaro said.

Citing the CGT union, Le Figaro reported that only two of the six refineries would remain operational, as four have already been halted due to maintenance and workers’ strikes.

The strike at TotalEnergies began on Tuesday and will last until Thursday. It will coincide with the country’s “interprofessional” strike called by three national unions for Sept. 29.

The CGT demands a 10 percent wage hike for 2022, more employment opportunities and a massive investment plan in France.

The labor action comes on the heels of strikes held by TotalEnergies employees with the same demands on June 24 and July 28.

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