New protests have been breaking out across Europe against the painful rise in fuel prices. A court ordered French fishermen encamped around one oil refinery to clear out fast, so that deliveries can resume. Travellers have also been stuck for days in blockaded French ports. More angry demonstrations are in store: Italian fishermen are expected to strike from Friday. The Fishermen’s Confederation in Spain has called a protest in Madrid then as well.
Guy Vernaeve, the Secretary General of
the Association of EU national fishing organisations known as Europeche said: “Fishermen sell their catch at auction. They can’t pass on the price of diesel. It’s not the way it works. And the bids at auction are going down. This puts strict limits on fishermen. You can see a differential of one to ten between what the fishermen get at auction and the price by the time it’s sold in a big supermarket.” In the poorest EU nation, Bulgaria, truck drivers have followed British and French truckers’ lead. Dutch truckers are planning action for Thursday. The main Spanish truckers’ association has called a strike for June 8. High duties on imported fuel imposed by their governments is causing as much frustration as international oil prices. In Britain, nearly 65 percent of the pump price of petrol is tax.