Macron announces extra aid for French arts sector battered by Covid-19 crisis

French President Emmanuel Macron said he was looking into more financial aid for the country's arts and culture sectors that have been hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic.


Macron said he also wanted to "defend European creativity" in the face of competition from areas such as the United States and China.

As part of the support measures, the French president called for a 12-month extension to France's special unemployment benefits for actors, performers, musicians and technicians, a scheme designed to protect them in the downtime between jobs.

The generous scheme helps sustain an industry that employs 1.3 million people across France — many of whom have been put out of work by the pandemic, which has forced the closure of museums and the postponement of major events.

Macron said small companies and independent workers that are most vulnerable to the crisis are eligible for a special 7-billion-euro support fund set up by the government for the months of March, April and May.

The president also announced that the "particularly hard-hit" National Centre for Music (CNM), founded earlier this year, would benefit from a supplementary 50-million-euro investment.




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