French unions cry 'betrayal' at Hollande for steel company deal

If anyone cares to understand why France is in such a fix, this little labor fable will illustrate the point nicely: French trade unions accused President Francois Hollande of betrayal on Saturday after his government backed away from a threat to nationalize ArcelorMittal's Florange steelworks. The Socialist government said on Friday it had won promises from ArcelorMittal to avoid forced redundancies and inject 180 million euros to develop the Florange plant, meaning it would no longer have to take over the site. Hollande came to office promising to create jobs and keep open the two furnaces at the site in northern France which ArcelorMittal says are not viable in a European steel sector suffering over-capacity. ArcelorMittal confirmed the details of the deal on Saturday, saying it would negotiate a voluntary redundancy deal with unions. Workers are angry the furnaces will remain idled rather than reopened and expressed doubt over ArcelorMittal's promise to offer...(Read Full Post)

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