The extension of business closures to the whole of the territory, among the announcements Wednesday evening by Emmanuel Macron, will increase the number of closed establishments from 90,000 to 150,000, while the total cost of aid and compensation to businesses increases. to 11 billion euros per month, said Wednesday the Ministry of the Economy.
This sum includes the total cost of the solidarity fund, partial unemployment for the State and exemptions from social contributions, including for establishments which remain open but are strongly impacted by the crisis.
The government has repeatedly adjusted the system of partial compensation for loss of turnover by the solidarity fund, and this year added partial coverage of fixed costs.
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The government is also considering the possibility of allowing traders to liquidate their stocks outside the sales period and financial compensation for unsold stocks.
Partial activity allows the employee who is not working to receive 84% of his net salary, the employer having a remaining charge of 15%, except in the sectors most affected by the crisis.
“Let’s open them all on May 15th”
“This new confinement will be terrible for all the closed sectors”, reacted in a tweet the president of Medef Geoffroy Roux de Bézieux. “It must be the last. Let’s open them all on May 15,” added the leader of the employers’ organization.
As far as businesses are concerned, only those who sell “basic goods and services” will have the right to remain open. These are mainly food stores but also bookstores, record stores and hairdressers. Clothing, shoe and toy shops will have to remain closed.
“This is additional bad news,” lamented Jacques Creyssel, general delegate of the Federation of Commerce and Distribution (FCD). “It is estimated that 150,000 to 200,000 businesses will have to close. Once again the business is the one that will pay the heaviest price,” he said, calling for “a strategic plan to avoid the bankruptcy of a great many traders afterwards. summer “.
To help the economic world to cope with the situation, the Head of State specified that all of the support measures for companies and employees, currently in force, “will be extended”. Companies can, for example, benefit from partial unemployment coverage for their employees, loans guaranteed by the State or even financial assistance from the solidarity fund.
“Partial unemployment before paid holidays”
For Yohann Petiot, director general of the Alliance du commerce, the support system is insufficient. “What about rents? What about stocks? Current aid does not go to all companies, it must be strengthened otherwise we are going to economic and social disaster,” he said.
“In companies, how are we going to organize?”, Asked for his part the president of the Confederation of small and medium-sized enterprises, François Asselin.
“We are going to have people with partial unemployment who will then take their paid vacation when activity starts up again,” he anticipated. “We should be able to reposition employee leave, otherwise it will pose enormous organizational problems.”
A glimmer of hope, the acceleration of the vaccination campaign should allow the economy to reopen within a few months. The president notably promised the reopening of the terraces of bars and restaurants from mid-May.
Read also: COVID-19 in 24 hours: aid to entrepreneurs, weakness of the euro, vaccine production …
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