The iconic Eiffel Tower, a global tourist magnet, remained closed on Wednesday due to a strike initiated by the staff, as announced by the tower’s operator. The protest, occurring on the 100th anniversary of the passing of engineer Gustave Eiffel, the tower’s creator, aims to voice concerns about the “current way it is managed,” according to a statement from the hard-left CGT union.
The CGT union expressed its belief that the tower’s operator, SETE, is “headed for disaster.”
The CGT criticized the management for steering the Eiffel Tower with an “overly ambitious and unsustainable” business model. The union alleged that the approach relied on an inflated estimate of future visitor numbers while downplaying construction costs.
SETE issued an apology to visitors, urging those with electronic tickets for Wednesday to “check their email” for further details about their bookings.
As Paris’s most renowned landmark, the Eiffel Tower draws nearly seven million visitors annually, with around three-quarters of them being foreigners, as indicated on its website. Although visitor numbers sharply declined during the Covid pandemic due to closures and travel restrictions, they rebounded to 5.9 million in 2022.
The CGT claimed that the tower’s management was projecting a future budget based on 7.4 million annual visitors, a figure that has never been achieved.
Gustave Eiffel passed away on December 27, 1923, at the age of 91.