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Radio France on strike over plans to cut up to 300 jobs

media Maison de la Radio, Paris AFP

Employees at Radio France turned off their microphones this Tuesday over plans to axe nearly 300 jobs as part of a cost-cutting efforts, with many of the daily programmes being replaced by music.

Following a call by six unions, including the powerful CGT, employees stopped production at the public broadcaster's stations, which range from talk radio to pop music to classical.

According to a pre-recorded announcement : "Following calls for a strike... we are unable to broadcast all of our normal programmes."

A general meeting is due to take place at the headquarters of the broadcaster, Maison de la Radio, later today. 

Aerial photo of Maison de la Radio, Paris 14th July 2018. AFP

French state to cut millions in funding

The proposed cuts are part of a plan to save €60 million by 2022 which was announced last June by the group's chairwoman Sibyle Veil following a recommendation by France's state auditors.

The move seeks to anticipate an expected €20 million cut in state funding over the next four years as well as an increase in staffing costs and further investments in digital media. 

It also involves the reorganisation of working hours to avoid a reliance on short-term contracts.

Some 270 jobs will go if employees agree to forgo up to 12 days of annual holiday, but the layoffs could rise to 390 if there is no agreement.

Unions have demanded the plan be dropped, describing it as "dangerous and destructive" as well as calling for the necessary staffing levels and resources "to carry out our public service mission". 

(with APF)

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