14 Aug 2009

French Polynesia braces for massive strike amid calls for government to quit

9:20 am on 14 August 2009

The French Polynesian president, Oscar Temaru, has questioned whether the territory can afford an unlimited strike in the middle of a recession.

Mr Temaru made the comment after the main eight unions announced that they would begin a stoppage in four days.

The planned action is based on a list of 14 grievances, with the central concern being a demand to shore up employment as job losses continue.

The government says the strike is more political than social, adding that two unions want the resignation of the government at best and that of the economics minister at worst.

A union leader says the economy needs to be revived as thousands of jobs have already been lost.