In order to “get out of the deadlock”, the union is calling for the opening of negotiations “on the basis of our wage demand alone,” according to an open letter this Saturday.
The CGT, which is leading the ongoing strikes at TotalEnergies, says it is ready to begin negotiations on Monday on the mere issue of wage increases, beyond its hiring and investment demands. according to an open letter sent to the group’s CEO on Saturday.
“To get out of the deadlock, we reiterate our request to open negotiations, in the hope that you will finally hear it. We are ready to start them on Monday based on our wage demand alone,” writes Éric Sellini, CGT coordinator TotalEnergies, in this letter addressed to the CEO of the group, Patrick Pouyanné and posted on Twitter.
The CGT is demanding a 10% increase from 2022 – 7% for inflation, 3% for ‘wealth sharing’, while the group made $10.6 billion in profits in the first half.
Management, for its part, recalls that it has awarded salary measures representing an average increase of 3.5% in 2022 and refers to a negotiation session scheduled for November 15 on salaries for 2023. It seems inflexible on this timetable.
“The problem of jobs and that of investment”, disregarded
In addition to the rise in wages, the CGT has been calling for a “workforce thaw” in France and “a huge investment plan” in France for several months now. “If that can help things move forward, let’s leave the issue of jobs and investment aside for now,” Éric Sellini told AFP.
In particular, the union asked “for a thorough review of the issue of temporary work and short-term contracts,” added Éric Sellini.
“The deficit situation in the country, due to the inability to discuss wage measures with management, is causing strong discontent and threatens to slow down the country’s economy,” the mail added to justify this concession, also recalling to the government to aid in wage increases.
‘2.62 billion euros for shareholders’
“Our company’s employees have enabled the Group through their work to achieve stratospheric gains,” the letter continues. “Evidence of this is the ability of the general management to very quickly release an exceptional €2.62 billion envelope for shareholders.”
“We’ve moved very quickly to reimburse shareholders, but we’re telling employees it’s urgent to wait: why this difference in treatment?” asked Thierry Defresne, CGT secretary of the European Commission TotalEnergies, along with the AFP.
Patrick Pouyanné, CEO of TotalEnergies, has so far not spoken publicly about the strike, but in an internal group video on Tuesday, he acknowledged that “the company’s results are exceptional in 2022” and said “we won’t, we will don’t forget it”.
Wanted Saturday on France InterFor his part, CFDT Secretary General Laurent Berger disapproved of these “preemptive strikes” as he believed that negotiations should be conducted first.