Store sales in France fell by nearly a quarter in March compared to a month earlier as many stores were closed due to the corona crisis. The French central bank reported this.
Sales of cars and goods, for example, fell by 43 percent, while food was down 0.9 percent. For the full first quarter, retail sales decreased more than 7 percent from the prior period. Sales increased in French supermarkets, but fell sharply in department stores.
French President Emmanuel Macron announced on Monday that the lockdown in France will be extended to May 11. Strict restrictions to curb the coronavirus came into effect on March 17 and have been extended once since.
To counter the damaging impact of the crisis on the economy, the French government is allocating even more money, for example to support companies. According to the French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire, this is EUR 110 billion. The first aid package still referred to EUR 45 billion.
State aid is offered to aviation group Air France-KLM, according to Le Maire. Support for Air France-KLM will come in the coming days, the minister said on French radio.