TotalEnergies employees do not say they are ready to stop the refineries immediately

TotalEnergies employees are not “ready” to shut down the group’s refineries immediately, we learned Thursday from the CGT, which is finally calling for a 48-hour strike, Tuesday and Wednesday, against 72 hours initially planned. It was initially planned to stop production in the refineries as part of the strike movement against the pension reform project: “What we are going to offer them for 48 hours is ‘nothing comes in, nothing comes out ‘, as per usual”.

To “know if the employees are ready” to stop, you must first “test renewable (strikes),” Thierry Defresne, CGT secretary of the TotalEnergies Europe committee, told AFP.

“It’s time to test renewable strikes”

“For the moment, the employees tell us that the time is not to make this decision, the time is to test (strikes) renewable over 48 hours, to see the strength we have, to count ourselves and have all the elements in hand to make the decision when the question of stopping the installations arises,” said Thierry Defresne. “The only impact on the working tool will be production flow reductions but not a stoppage,” he also said.

The CGT TotalEnergies had presented this deadline at the beginning of next week as a “crucial moment”, with its sights set on a hardening of the movement and a possible shutdown of certain refineries, as during the major strike for wages in the month of last October.

“Standing on the call of the railway workers”

They therefore finally favored unity with other branches: “The idea was to stick to the call of the railway workers on February 7 and 8, the goal is to be as many as possible on the same dates and all hitting the same nail at the same time”, declared Thierry Defresne.

Wishing for an expansion of the trades represented during these strikes, he is counting on a hardening of the movement in the regions next week, between the two national days of February 7 and 11: “we will perhaps be able to witness a radicalization of the movement, which will mean that the decision to stop the installations will be taken” later, he added, considering that “it is really the reaction of the interpro on the employment pools that will be able to guide”.

“We are not on the back foot”, assured Thierry Defresne, who underlines that a parliamentary majority is “not acquired” and that a government recourse to 49.3 could set “fire to the powder”.