French Prime Minister Édouard Philippe is due to unveil on Wednesday, December 11, the entire pension reform, after six days of strikes, blockades and demonstrations. To try to calm the social rumble, the executive will also reveal the compromises, even the concessions, that he is ready to grant.
Édouard Philippe will speak at 12 noon before the Economic, Social and Environmental Council and promised to present the "architecture" of the reform aimed at merging the 42 current pension plans (general, civil servants, private, special, autonomous , complementary) in one universal point system.
Trains at a standstill, closed metro lines, bicycles and scooters, nurseries and idling schools, blockages refineries ... France has been living since Thursday, December 5 to the rhythm of mobilization, at the call of an inter-union FO-CGT-Solidaires-FSU and four youth organizations, followed by some federations of Unsa, CFDT or CFTC, or even by CFE-CGC executives.
On the first day, Thursday, December 5, more than 800,000 people demonstrated in France according to the Ministry of the Interior. Inflated, the inter-union had convened a second day of mobilization on Tuesday, December 10. This resulted in a participation in the events well back, half less in the majority of processions. The rates of strikers were also significantly down, except at SNCF and RATP.
On Wednesday 11th again, the two operators announced a traffic "very disturbed", including a TGV on four in circulation and ten closed metro lines. RATP has already announced that the disruption will continue Thursday.
1975 rather than 1963?
Meeting on Tuesday evening, the Inter called for local action Thursday and Saturday, then a day of interprofessional mobilization Tuesday, December 17 in Paris, at the same time as the demonstration of hospital staff.
In this context, the announcements of Edouard Philippe are particularly expected. Even though he himself is not under any illusions about their immediate effect. "It is not because I make a speech that the demonstrations will stop," warned the head of the government at a meeting in camera with the LREM group in the Assembly. "There are no magic ads," he insisted.
Tuesday night, with Emmanuel Macron, they proceeded to the final arbitrations during a dinner at the Elysee Palace with tenors of the majority, with almost nothing filtering, to preserve the effect of surprise.
Lagging in the application of the reform, transition periods for special schemes, possible upgrading of public service careers, including teachers, age pivot, hardship, family rights ... are all options that the Prime Minister will rise, or not, Wednesday. He will provide after-sales service announcements in the 20 hours of TF1.
Already mentioned in the morning by Mr. Philippe at the breakfast of the majority, the idea of implementing the reform from the 1975 generation, instead of 1963 as originally envisaged, was specified at the beginning. after the dinner on Tuesday evening at the Elysee, we learned from a participant.
Actions have already been promised to teachers and police officers. The government has also suggested that there will be no additional fiscal measure before the reform comes into effect.
"Macron will distribute"
But in front of the National Assembly on Tuesday, the Prime Minister also repeated that it was necessary "to tell the truth to the French, to say it quietly: it gradually passes by a lengthening of the working time, gradually so as to preserve the individual choices of each".
A position that did not convince the boss of the CFDT, Laurent Berger, before the strike. Mute since the first day of mobilization, his reaction to the decisions of the government will be particularly scrutinized.
A week ago, he reiterated that if, in the reform, there was "the idea that you have to work longer, it is niet". "If there is any element of parametric reform (age measurement, lengthening the period of contribution, Editor's note), the CFDT will mobilize," he threatened.
Clear gestures are also expected by CFTC, Unsa and CFE-CGC, whose partial adherence to discontent is exceptional.
The opposition parties, who constantly denounce the vagueness surrounding the reform, are waiting for the Prime Minister at the turn. On the right, one is ready to reproach any retreat deemed excessive against the demands of the strikers. On the left, particularly insubordinate France, we continue to demand the outright withdrawal of a "harmful" or even "dangerous" project, something that Emmanuel Macron is not ready to do.
The President of the Republic, who has made the "transformation" of the country, the raison d'être of its five-year, plays big on this reform. And he risks losing on both sides, with his detractors as his followers, in case of decline.
On the side of the unions calling for the withdrawal of the reform, Wednesday's announcements are eagerly awaited. "The movement will be able to rebound, we can not blame us for fighting a project that we do not know," summarized Michel Beaugas (FO), who expects "announcements on the railway and the RATP for the Unsa and on governance to satisfy the CFDT ". "Macron will distribute," he predicts.
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