Belfort (AFP)

Nearly a thousand employees of General Electric (GE) Belfort approved by a large majority Monday a new management proposal to save 307 of the 792 job cuts originally planned by a social plan striking the site, found journalists from AFP.

This proposal, approved by a show of hands, provides in return for an annual savings plan of 12 million euros, according to unions, organizers of this consultation.

The management of GE had submitted Friday to employees two new options of its social plan, the first plan to reduce by 111 job cuts and the second by 307, with this "plan for cost reductions and performance improvement of the site".

By the end of 2020, the total workforce of GE Belfort's gas turbine production plant will be reduced to 1,275 employees, she said.

Philippe Petitcolin, spokesman for the inter-union that only meets the CFE-CGC and SUD after the departure of the CGT, welcomed the "wide plebiscite of employees present".

"The major advance is that there is an industrial project that will also be negotiated by the end of the year," he told the press.

General Electric employs some 4,300 employees in the Cité du Lion, including 1,800 in this entity. The American group announced last May a social plan initially providing for the removal of nearly 1,050 jobs in France, including 792 in Belfort.

Saturday, some 2,600 protesters, according to the prefecture, beat the pavement in Belfort in support of the employees of the industrial site. In the ranks of the demonstrators, local elected officials but also Jean-Luc Mélenchon who abstained from any statement.

General Electric is "a flagship of our industry necessary to achieve the energy transition that #Macron and his friends have abandoned," however tweeted the leader of France rebellious.

This demonstration was also marked by the union division, the CGT having decided not to join the parade supported by the CFE-CGC and SUD, preferring to join a picket line in front of the factory.

© 2019 AFP