While some stores will gradually reopen from May 11th as part of the deconfinement plan, restaurants, bars and cafés had to remain closed. Since then, many people are wondering when they will be allowed to open again.
Edouard Philippe presented the phase 2 of the containment exit plan this Thursday May 28 and confirmed restaurants, bars and cafés are to reopen "in all departments starting June 2" but with "temporary restrictions" in orange areas that is to say Paris and Ile-de-France. In these areas, sole café, bar and restaurants terraces are allowed to reopen. This measure will be set for at least three weeks.
This April 24, French President Emmanuel Macron, his ministers Bruno Le Maire and Gérald Darmanin as well as State Secretary for the Minister of Europe and Foreign Affairs Jean-Baptiste Lemoyne spoke about the situation, via video-conference, with professionals from the hotel trade and restaurant industry.
Measures to support the hotel-restauration industry
At the end of this meeting, Bruno Le Maire and Gérald Darmanin have announced several supportive measures such as reinforcing solidarity funds. "Starting from June 1st, we will reinforce solidarity funds. From now on, it will be avaialble for all hotel trade and restaurant industry companies up to 2 millions turnover instead of 1 million euros, and up to 20 employees instead of 10. The second part of this fund, that was limited to 5000 euros will go up to 10,000 euros for all companies".
Other news? Part-time working will be extended for all sectors that cannot start their business again on May 11th, including hotel-restauration trade. The government also thinks about setting up on a long term basis, an investment fund to relaunch this field and enable companies to start over properly. "We will organize a meeting with insurances and banks to know how to feed this fund" the Minister of the Economy said. A relaunch plan will be presented on May 14th during the Tourism interministerial committee.
As for Gérald Darmanin, he said that "800 million euros of charges have been postponed already". He also said that the government will "continue, for the entire sector, to postpone payroll taxes and corporate taxes".
Interview by France Inter this May 4, Bruno Le Maire said that companies in the hotel-food trade will collapse: "Yes, there will be bankruptcies. I haven't hidden it. Very small companies will collapses. Stores will collapse. We know it and we should get ready to face these moments that are to come in the next few months, where cash flow problems will become solvency issues for many bosses".
Restaurants, bars and cafés to reopen on June 2?
According to France Inter, restaurants, cafés and bars might reopen from Tuesday June 2 in France. Yet, Ile-de-France where departments might be orange, these places can only open their terraces. This new measures might be applied at least until June 22, said to be the beginning of the third phase.
Decision will be made on Thursday May 28 at 5 p.m. when the phase 2 will be presented.
Of course, restaurants, cafés and bars owners will have to respect very strict health instructions. The GNI has shared this May 22 a deconfinement health protocole common to the entire hotel, café and restaurant sector. According to RTL, the obligation to leave four sqm empty between each patron in a restaurant has been swept aside. Professionals of the sector explained that it could not work in those conditions. Yet, restaurateurs will have to keep a one-meter distance. According to BFMTV, facemaks might be mandatory for waiters and patrons when they are moving around the restaurant.