« Helping businesses that risk disappearing in silence “, This is the watchword of the government while the social plans of large groups occupy the center stage. The stakes are considerable since France has 3.5 million self-employed workers, while the 634,000 businesses (excluding wholesale trade and non-commercial crafts) employ the same number of people. Finally, the craft industry brings together 1.3 million businesses and 2.9 million people.
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These three categories have already benefited from aid through the solidarity fund, loans guaranteed by the State (PGE) and the deferral of fiscal and social charges faced with the crisis linked to the coronavirus. Insufficient for weakened structures since, according to Agnès Pannier-Runacher, ” depending on the region, 15% to 30% of small businesses do not know if they will finish the year ” Hence a three-part support plan, combining emergency measures and medium-term support.
Reinforcement of immediate aid
In the short term, the State will grant 400 million euros in social security contributions exemption, while the solidarity fund will be extended by one month. With reduced access conditions, since it will no longer be necessary to have been refused a PGE to access the additional assistance of € 2,000 to € 5,000 provided for companies close to bankruptcy. An additional 500 million euros will be mobilized, according to the ministry.
For the self-employed, the Madelin contracts (which make it possible to set up an additional pension and benefit from pension guarantees), as well as the individual retirement savings plans resulting from the Pacte law, may be subject to a “buy-back”. (unlocking) total or partial, up to a limit of € 8,000.
Support digital transformation
According to Bercy, the confinement made it possible to observe ” a real difference between companies that have used digital tools and others “, the first ” having saved the furniture ” Welcoming initiatives such as making online appointments for hairdressers, she called for catching up with French small businesses in terms of digitization. ” According to the clothing federation, 78% of small businesses in the sector have no digital solution “Said the Secretary of State.
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In addition to training aid, the plan will rely on an envelope of 750 million euros in loans guaranteed by the Public Investment Bank to launch products and projects.
Boosting businesses in fragile areas
The government also intends to fight against the desertification of city centers, a phenomenon already behind the Action Coeur de Ville plan, launched in March 2018 to revitalize the center of 220 medium-sized cities. The plan is intended to be broader, including larger cities, but also small towns.
The third budget for 2020 debated in the National Assembly
The Banque des Territoires, a subsidiary of the Caisse des Dépôts et Consignations, will be on the move to intervene in fragile areas: it will propose to local authorities (municipalities, departments, regions) to build up land to buy vacant premises or shops on the point of closing, in order to renovate and rent them at a preferential rate to traders. The government has put forward the figure of a hundred property companies to renovate ” at least 6,000 small businesses in the next five years ».
Online business competition
The government does not wish to set criteria on the types of activities to be facilitated, leaving it to the local level to select them. However, Agnès Pannier-Runacher drew attention to the fact of preserving the “ diversity of offer : Standardized City Centers May Favor Online Commerce ».
In this regard, the Secretary of State recalled that the establishment of an Amazon-type warehouse, unlike the opening of a commercial area, was not subject to national authorization, but local. Emmanuel Macron meanwhile retained Monday, June 29, the idea of the Citizens’ Convention of a moratorium on new commercial areas located on the outskirts of cities.