French store could cut hours over energy shortage

STORY: European shoppers just got a glimpse of how tough things could get.

French supermarket chain Leclerc said Monday (July 25) that it could cut store opening hours in response to the Ukraine crisis.

That’s after country President Emmanuel Macron said he would soon submit a national “energy restraint plan”.

It will ask all citizens to find ways to cut energy usage.

The supermarket sector has already committed to energy saving measures, but Leclerc may now go further.

The sector has committed to measures including switching off illuminated signs as soon as customers leave.

Lighting of sales areas will also be reduced by 30% during periods of high energy demand.

With about 17% of its gas coming from Russia, France is less dependent on Moscow than some neighbors.

But the gas crunch comes as it grapples with other problems including shutdowns at ageing nuclear reactors.

That leaves the country fearing a winter energy shortage.

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