November 8, 2019 / 2:40 PM / 14 days ago

Total says to avoid fuel shortage as strike escalates at Feyzin refinery

FILE PHOTO: The logo of Total oil company is pictured in Abuja, Nigeria October 18, 2017. REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde/File Photo

PARIS (Reuters) - French energy major Total said on Friday it was taking measures to avoid fuel and other products shortages after striking workers blocked distribution from its 110,000 barrels-per-day Feyzin refinery.

CGT union workers at the refinery near the city of Lyon have been on strike since early October over potential job cuts, prompting a halt in production. On Friday, the workers decided to block distribution from the refinery.

“Total is making every effort to ensure that the strike affecting the Feyzin platform does not have any impact on the supply of its customers in the Lyon region,” the company said in a statement.

It added that there were no planned job cuts but it intends to halt a heavy fuels production unit by 2021 due to falling demand for the product.

It said the ongoing strike had led to the shutdown of nearly all refining units and only the steam cracker was operating at minimum capacity.

Reporting by Bate Felix; Editing by Emelia Sithole-Matarise

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