French industry switches to oil, fearing Russian gas cut-off

Energy-intensive companies in France are switching their gas boilers to fuel, trying to avoid disruptions in the event of further reductions in Russian gas supplies.

At a conference on French business and economics, several top managers of the country said they were preparing for possible power outages.

"Let's prepare for a cut-off of Russian gas. Today it's the most likely scenario," said French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire to the heads of companies at the conference.

"What we've done is we've converted our boilers, so they're capable of running on gas or oil, and we can even switch to coal if we need to," said the head of one of the world's leading tire manufacturers “Michelin”, Florent Menegaux.

France relies on nuclear power for about 70% of its electricity, meaning it is much less directly dependent on Russian gas than neighbouring Germany.