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Macron beats unions as rail reform is approved

The Connexion, Jun 14

The French Senate has approved a landmark overhaul of state rail operator SNCF, Senators passed the rail reform by a vote of 245 to 82, just a day after lawmakers in the National Assembly approved the final bill.

The vote in the National Assembly is a blow to the labour movement, which called three months of rolling strikes over the bill, the longest industrial action in over 30 years on French railways.

Train drivers particularly had resisted plans to deny job and pension guarantees to new rail recruits, as well as plans to turn the SNCF into a joint-stock company, which they see as a first step toward privatisation.

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