BRITISH EMBASSY PARIS·TUESDAY, 14 APRIL 2020
I hope that you managed to have something of a break over Easter, despite the circumstances.
I wanted to write with a further update on the Covid-19 situation in France, following President Macron’s address to the nation (English translation here) yesterday evening; in particular, highlighting what this means for British citizens living in France as we enter the fifth week of confinement.
In France, the Easter weekend saw intensive care cases begin to fall, though overall numbers remain high. As a result, President Macron has decided to extend the current confinement measures to 11 May. However, vulnerable groups will be asked to remain isolated for longer – more detail on this will be provided in the coming fortnight. The President asks that we all continue to respect these measures in order to save lives.
After 11 May, the government plans a progressive re-opening of certain institutions and businesses. Schools will be the first to re-open, including crèches, collèges and lycées. Please note that this does not include universities, however, which will not re-open this side of the summer. Cafés, bars, restaurants, cinemas and museums will not re-open immediately. There will also be no large-scale events, such as festivals, until at least mid-July.
More help, particularly for companies unable to function and unemployed workers, will be announced in the coming days. Support for businesses struggling with commercial loan repayments will be increased and simplified. There will also be a specific package for the hard-hit tourism and hospitality sectors. Please continue to follow French Government communication channels closely for more information.
President Macron also announced an increase in testing so that by 11 May anyone with Covid-19 symptoms will be able to be tested. Everyone will have access to a simple mask and on public transport, for example, their use will become systematic.
The border situation will remain as it is now. After 11 May, France will remain closed to non-European countries until further notice. The UK-France border remains open for essential travel and we will continue to update our travel advice regularly to reflect any changes.
Thank you again for your understanding and for playing your part by staying at home when and where it is possible for you to do so. Let me also thank everyone in the French healthcare system for everything they are doing to keep us safe and well, and for the vast numbers of other people who, by going to work, ensure that there is food on the shelves, that rubbish is collected, and that public transport continues to run.
My team and I remain in constant contact with the French government and we will continue to provide further updates as the situation develops. To stay up to date, please do follow us on our social media channels (Twitter: @UKinFrance @BritishinFrance @EdLlewellynFCO) and visit our web pages.
Thank you for taking the time to read this message. Stay well and stay safe.