Florent Vigny, Causidicor, France

France is officially for two months in “a state of health emergency” (JORF n°0072 du 24 mars 2020 texte n° 2. LOI n° 2020-290 du 23 mars 2020 d’urgence pour faire face à l’épidémie de covid-19). This special Law was enacted to authorize government to take emergency measures for all parts of economy and society (law, proceedings rules, healthcare…). The Parliament will control this work after the end of this period.

From 16 March 2020 the most significant developments for business are:

  • You have to stay strictly at home. The violation of the confinement rules is punishable by a fine of 135 euros, 1500 euros in case of recurrence «within 15 days» and in the case of «four violations within 30 days», the offence is «punishable by a fine of 3700 euros and a maximum of six months imprisonment.
  • Schools were closed on 13 March until the 4 May.
  • All non-essential business is closed with people to work from home wherever possible.  Essential business are groceries, wine stores (!), gas stations, pharmacies, telecommunication services.
  • About judicial works:
    • The courts have been shut except for real emergency.
    • The statutes of limitations, foreclosure, time bar are suspended until the end of the period.
  • All public events and mass gatherings are forbidden. For example, It is not allowed to go to funerals except for the close family.
  • Concerning transportation,
    • Some airports (ex. Orly) are closed. The most passengers and goods traffic are suspended.
    • Ports are trying to work with some strict measures but there’s no congestion. European Ports are waiting for reefers congested in Chinese Ports.
    • Domestic trucking is working to provide grocery.
  • For the future, government and factories are thinking to strictly stop the dependence from Chinese factories and ports. They want to rethink its energy mix, production, logistics.

The end of the containment period is not defined.