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Macron to address French economy in televised speech

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Macron to address French economy in televised speech

French President Emmanuel Macron in a televised speech earlier this year
Photo: Magali Delporte

French President Emmanuel Macron will address the nation today in a televised speech. He is expected to discuss the country’s three-phase deconfinement plan as well as opportunities for economic recovery.

While France’s aggressive lockdown contributed to a 5.3% reduction in GDP growth and the loss of nearly 500,00 jobs in the first quarter, the country has rebounded relatively quickly. Most shops, cafes and restaurants outside of Paris reopened this month and travel restrictions for EU countries will be lifted tomorrow. The third and final phase of easing, which will allow most businesses and public areas to reopen in the capital, is set to begin on June 22.

The country’s encouraging case numbers—combined with heightened testing and the release of a contact tracing app in early June—have led both the finance minister and the head of the largest domestic employers’ organisation to call for an accelerated return to economic normality, especially for Parisian businesses operating at restricted capacity, many of which are currently losing money. Though France has so far avoided a second wave of infections, epidemiologists are urging reopened businesses to adhere to preventative measures to avoid a summer resurgence. It is likely that Macron will move up the June 22 date for Parisian businesses to reopen, but do not expect France’s economy to return to normal this summer.

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