Blog: Simon WarburtonFrench strikes a refined art

Simon Warburton | 15 October 2010

It's all getting a bit feisty in France at the moment with a rolling series of national strikes paralysing the country to various degrees.

The French have been a bit behind their Greek cousins in this respect - both protesting against the current wave of austerity measures sweeping Europe in a bid to drive down government deficits - but have now apparently caught up with their customary gusto.

A wave of walk-outs has now embraced the petrol refineries it appears, with queues of motorists jamming station forecourts as consumers start to panic-buy fuel.

The potential fuel shortages are also now starting to threaten French airports, although apparently Paris Orly and Charles de Gaulle are insisting they have enough for 17 more days.

However, as the UK showed in 2000, when it went through a similar if less noisy protest, as much as governments exhort citizens not to empty the shelves or petrol stations, they generally do in the end.


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