France heading for worst recession since WWII: minister

France heading for worst recession since WWII: minister
Officials have said the lockdown will last until at least April 15. (File/AFP)
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Updated 06 April 2020

France heading for worst recession since WWII: minister

France heading for worst recession since WWII: minister
  • France imposed a nationwide stay-at-home order from March 17 after shuttering all nonessential businesses
  • Statistics office Insee said last month that the lockdown has slashed overall economic activity by 35 percent

PARIS: France is likely to see its deepest recession since the end of World War II this year because of the coronavirus crisis, Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire warned Monday.
“The worst growth figure in France since 1945 was -2.2 percent in 2009, after the financial crisis of 2008. We will probably be very far beyond -2.2 percent” this year, Le Maire told a Senate panel.
“It’s an indication of the amplitude of the economic shock we’re facing,” he said.
France imposed a nationwide stay-at-home order from March 17 after shuttering all nonessential businesses. Officials have said the lockdown will last until at least April 15.
Statistics office Insee said last month that the lockdown has slashed overall economic activity by 35 percent, and estimated every month of shutdown would cut annual GPD by three percentage points.
Services, heavy industry and construction are all taking big hits, Insee said, as factories are shut and only a handful of business sectors, such as supermarkets and pharmacies, remain open.
A wave of French blue-chip companies have abandoned their profitability targets for the year, while employers’ associations have warned that hundreds of smaller firms and shops risk bankruptcy.
The government has pledged 45 billion euros ($49 billion) in loan guarantees and other relief to help companies get through the crisis.


National Housing inks $530m project financing deals for 15,000 homes

National Housing inks $530m project financing deals for 15,000 homes
Updated 19 January 2021

National Housing inks $530m project financing deals for 15,000 homes

National Housing inks $530m project financing deals for 15,000 homes
  • Al Rajhi will finance the development of new housing projects in Riyadh and Jeddah

National Housing Co. (NHC) inked today, Jan. 19, two financing agreements worth SR2 billion ($530 million) with Al Rajhi Bank, it said in a statement.

Under these agreements, Al Rajhi will finance the development of new housing projects in Riyadh and Jeddah, which will provide around 15,000 residential units.

These agreements will also help implement the e-financing platform for the beneficiaries of the Ministry of Housing’s Sakani program.