government unveils “resilience plan” in light of fallout from war in Ukraine

Presented next Wednesday at 4 p.m., it will not be a new “at all costs” as during the health crisis, the government has already warned, but specific measures for the companies and sectors most affected.

The government on Wednesday unveiled the “resilience plan” promised by Emmanuel Macron to cushion the economic impact of the conflict in Ukraine, which is leading to soaring energy and commodity prices.

It will not be a new “at all costs” as it was during the health crisis, the government warned, but specific measures for the companies and sectors that have been hardest hit.

“It will be very sectoral,” the prime minister insisted last week. With the key still several billion euros on the table, via various devices that Jean Castex has to explain during a press conference at 4 pm.

Several billion euros on the table

Since the announcement of this plan by Emmanuel Macron during his televised speech on March 2, the government has multiplied consultations with many economic sectors.

Some have asked for help since the outbreak of the conflict and the implementation of Western sanctions against the Russian regime, which have completely disrupted their supply chains and their points of sale, especially accelerating the rise in energy and fuel prices.

On Tuesday, hauliers, farmers and fishermen blocked oil depots in Lorient and Brest to protest rising diesel and petrol prices.

After the discount of 15 euro cents per liter of fuel from April 1 announced by Jean Castex on Sunday, they are waiting for other measures for the most energy-consuming professionals and companies.

“We will not disappoint the fishermen,” replied the Prime Minister, who was on his way to Rennes and assured, a month before the presidential election, that measures for them would be included in the resilience plan.

“All companies that have contracts with Russia, whose supply depends on raw materials from Russia, aluminum, titanium… the more they are exposed, the higher the compensation will be,” he also promised on Thursday. Aisne.

Agriculture, metals and logistics

This is particularly the case in agriculture, where French producers fear a lack of fertilizer and animal feed, and Russia and Ukraine are major suppliers.

“We know that Russia supplies France with 17% of the gas, 23% of the oil and a lot of fertilizer: 70% of the gas is used to make fertilizer and last year we had a price increase of 138%.” latest agricultural fair Christiane Lambert, president of the FNSEA.

In industry, it is the rising prices of certain metals such as aluminum, nickel, titanium or palladium, of which Russia is a major producer, that the automobile industry or aviation uses, especially if the conflict lasts for a long time.

Not to mention the logistical problems caused by the interruption of certain deliveries from Ukraine or Russia.

Part activity

Among the measures examined, Economy Minister Bruno Le Maire mentioned possible aid to strengthen the equity capital of weakened companies, an extension of state-guaranteed loans (PGE) introduced during the crisis. †

On Tuesday, Medef’s president, Geoffroy Roux de Bézieux, asked for the state’s reactivation of support for partial activity, as during the health crisis.

“We need to reclaim partial unemployment for companies that have been forced to shut down, because we are really in a case of force majeure,” he told RMC.

A few days earlier, Labor Minister Elisabeth Borne had mentioned the use of the new long-term sub-activity system.

“Companies that see their production shut down because a part is missing can mobilize partial activity in the long run. It’s a tool that can protect jobs over time,” she told LCI.