French State’s partial activity scheme extended for St. Martin and St. Barths

MARIGOT–French Minister of Labour Muriel Penicaud on May 2, 2018, signed a decree to extend the duration of the partial activity (chomage partiel) scheme in Saint-Martin and Saint-Barthélemy and it was subsequently published in the Official Journal on May 12, 2018.

The order increases the annual quota of hours to be compensated from 1,000 to 1,600 per employee.
The scheme implemented in the wake of Hurricane Irma was introduced to help companies operating in St. Martin and St. Barths retain their employees until the start of the next tourist season.

As of May 3, 2018, 705 companies and 5,404 employees in St. Martin had benefited from it at a cost of 26.5 million euros, based on beneficiaries using all 1,000 hours of partial activity.

In St. Barths, 423 companies representing 2,933 employees benefitted from the scheme at a potential cost of 12.7 million euros.

Partial activity has helped to stabilise the number of job seekers in St. Martin and St. Barths in recent months. According to the latest figures the number of job seekers in St. Martin (categories A, B and C) stood at 4,645 persons in the first quarter of 2018, a figure almost stable compared to the fourth quarter of 2017 (an increase of 26 people) and down 4.7 per cent during the same period last year.

In St. Barths, the number of jobseekers within the same categories was 646 people in the first quarter, a stable figure compared to the fourth quarter of 2017, but up 18.5 per cent in one year.

Partial activity is a resource for the prevention of redundancies, making it possible to maintain the employees in service when the company is facing economic difficulties. For each hour to be compensated the company is required to pay its employees an hourly allowance but in return is reimbursed by the State.

Source: The Daily Herald