By KONSTANTIN ROZHNOV and MORGANE LAPEYRE
Industrial action at three French refineries of Total, the
nations biggest oil company, entered its sixth day, as
a strike at La Mede facility remains strong amid
a pay dispute, a union official said.
The strike at the Gonfreville, Feyzin and La Mede refineries
remains, with 20% of all staff participating, according to an
official at Paris-based Total, who asked not to be identified
citing corporate policy.
Gonfreville and La Mede have halted output, while units at
Feyzin are being shut, Dimitri Guiller, a representative of
CFDT union, said by phone. About 90% of staff on the 4 a.m.
local time shift at La Mede have walked out, Julien Granato,
a CGT union official at the site said by phone.
Europe has to shut refining
capacity somewhere, and
other European refineries will not mind French workers
pushing themselves out of the picture, Olivier Jakob,
managing director of Zug, Switzerland-based Petromatrix GmbH,
said in an e-mailed report today.
Totals five refineries in France, including the Donges
and Grandpuits facilities
, have a capacity to
process about 800,000 bpd of crude, or 60% of the
nations output, according to data compiled by
. Demand for oil products in France
averaged 1.76 million bpd in the third quarter, according to
data from the International Energy Agency published on Dec.
Industrial action over pay started at the refineries on Dec.
13, the day when salary negotiations began with Total,
according to CGT. The CFDT and CGC-CFE unions agreed to a pay
deal with the company Dec. 16, and an acceptance of the deal
by two unions was sufficient for any agreement to be
deemed valid, Vienna-based researcher JBC Energy GmbH
The Donges and Grandpuits refineries are boosting production
after workers there voted earlier this week to end the strike
action, the Total official said in an e-mailed response to
questions. Staff at Donges voted earlier today whether to
accept the pay agreement and ballots are being counted,
Christophe Hiou, a CGT official, said by phone.
The company bought a diesel cargo and four barges of the fuel
on Tuesday totaling almost 30,000 metric tons for delivery in
the Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Antwerp oil-hub via the Platts
pricing window, according to a survey of traders and brokers.
It had purchased 8,500 tons the previous day.