July 6, 2020

COVID-19: Measures to Support the French Economy

Updated on 12 April 2021

The various thematic memos included below summarize a large number of the measures composing the exceptional package enacted by the French State aimed at supporting companies particularly affected by the economic and social consequences of the COVID-19 crisis and the first lockdown (confinement) decided in March 2020 to limit the spread of the epidemy, and the strengthening of this package triggered by the second lockdown decided end of October 2020 and the subsequent curfew.

These measures are intended, in particular, to preserve the cash flows of companies whose business is adversely impacted during the lockdown.

These thematic memos are regularly updated by the Goodwin's teams based on legislation published in the French Official Gazette (Journal Officiel) as well as announcements made by the Government and the relevant governmental bodies.

The thematic memos cover the following areas:

1. Taxes and social contributions

  • Tax measures for the benefit of companies
  • Specific measures regarding time limits applicable for tax audits purposes
  • Social measures for the benefit of companies
  • Measures applicable to distressed companies 

    Read the Memo 
    [Updated on November 4, 2020]

2. Corporate law

  • Convening and holding of stockholders’ meetings and other board meetings 

    Read the Memo
     [Updated on March 10, 2021]
  • Distribution of dividends (or shares buy-back) for large companies benefiting from French State-aid in the form of French-state guaranteed loans or deferral of tax and social security obligations payment  – Read the Memo [Updated on March 9, 2021]

3. Foreign direct investment

Communication « Foreign Direct Investment » : The European Commission requests Member States to fully implement their national regulations regarding the control of foreign direct investment (or, if not, to introduce the appropriate regulations) in the healthcare field.* In addition, the European Commission could also enforce its own powers under competition law to ensure a fair access to health facilities needed in the context of the pandemic and marketed/commercialized in the European Union by companies registered in third countries.

*(European Commission, Communication dated March 25th, 2020 (reference: C(2020) 1981 final)) 

Read the European *Commission* Communication

4. Financial Support Measures for Companies

  • The French State Guaranteed Loan (PGE) / The Fonds de développement économique et social / Repaid Advances, together with the “FAQ - State-guaranteed loan" dated December 7, 2020 (updated French version only) – Read the Memo [Updated on April 7, 2021] 
  • Notion of distressed company under European Union law – Read the Memo
  • Exceptional measures implemented by Bpifrance – Read the Memo
  • Public support measures for domestic and export credit insurance– Read the Memo [Updated on January 4, 2021] 
  • European Financial Support Measures for Companies – Read the Memo 

5. The solidarity fund 

Read the Memo [Updated on April 6, 2021]

6. Payments of suppliers of electricity, gas and water and payments of landlords 

Read the Memo [Updated on January 5, 2021]

7. Emergency support plan dedicated to support start-ups 

Read the Memo

8. Legal and contractual deadlines/time limits

  • Extension of time limits during the state of health emergency and adaptation of legal proceedings during the state of health emergency
  • Measures applicable to civil and commercial courts  
    Read the Memo [Updated on November 23, 2020]

9. Amicable proceedings and insolvency proceedings

  • Temporary adaptation of the rules for distressed companies to reflect the consequences of the public health emergencies for private companies and agricultural businesses and to avoid massive job destruction 

    Read the Memo 
    [Updated on December 10, 2020]