French Nuclear Workers Reach Wage Agreement

French Nuclear Workers Reach Wage Agreement

After several weeks of strikes at nuclear power plants throughout the country which uses nuclear energy prominently in its energy grid, the administration of the French energy company EDF and the General Confederation of Labor (CGT) trade union have reached an agreement. The agreement was signed on 21 October.

Under the terms of the new employment contract, the salary of low-paid EDF employees will be increased by 5% from the beginning of next year, meeting the main demands of the striking workers as a whole. Higher-ranking employees will receive a 2.5% increase in wages. The salary of all  employees at the company will be increased by at least 200 euros per month.

12 out of 18 nuclear power plants in France were affected by the strike. In the last days of the strike, the total capacity of nuclear power plants in the country fell to 46% of its standard value. Right after signing the new employment contract, EDF workers promised to return to work immediately. Representatives of the company, in turn, announced their intention to reach 96% of the potential output of the reactors by February 2023.

The agreement reached between the workers and the EDF is further evidence that the working class can win improved concessions from the capitalists through organized action, especially when it is targeted towards the core of their most critical industries. However, the employees returning to work will soon find that they are still subject to the whims of the market. Under these circumstances, it is only a matter of time before working conditions become unbearable again.

Earlier, we reported that nuclear workers had joined the strike in the French energy sector on October 13th. We remind you that the strike of energy sector workers began on September 27, 2022. Oil workers from major energy companies TotalEnergies and ExxonMobil initiated the strike. As a result of the strike, about a third of the country’s gas stations were left without fuel.

Sources: 1