It is no secret that the measures taken to combat the covid pandemic are having a concrete impact on ski resorts and mountain sports. France, for example, has been hit hard.
Faced with the closure of ski lifts, but also with the closure of certain businesses in the resorts, the French government promised financial aid, which has been available since the end of March.
Compensation for the closure of ski lifts
The holiday season affects all sectors of activity, including ski resorts, and therefore ski lifts.
Faced with the loss of income that these closures represent, the French government has been working since last December on a financial support plan to help mountain professionals.
Unveiled at the end of March, the support plan has a total budget of 400 million euros (Jean-Baptiste Lemoigne, Secretary of State for Tourism). It had to be validated by the European Commission.
To go into more detail, this aid plan must “partially compensate for the loss of turnover or revenue” suffered by these operators whose activity has been “particularly affected by the administrative measures prohibiting public access” to their facilities, taken to combat the pandemic.
As a result, this subsidy will allow operators to compensate for a maximum of 49% of their annual reference turnover.
Aid to be put into perspective
Between 500 and 700 million euros in total could go to operators, i.e. around 200 public and private structures. This compensation is a much-needed breath of fresh air for farmers.
However, the Covid-19 pandemic and the stoppage of ski lifts caused the collapse of mountain tourism this winter in France, with eight of the eleven billion euros of annual pre-crisis economic spin-offs lost. (Protourisme)
Shops also supported ?
The second provision of the government’s plan is aid for all businesses – including food shops – in the resorts.
Faced with the uncertainties of the health crisis we are experiencing, the government has decided to help all businesses in the resorts, in the form of a solidarity fund. It will be possible for them to access the solidarity fund, up to a maximum of 10,000 euros, in the event that their turnover falls by at least 50%.
It could concern some 12,000 shops and businesses in France.
Finally, ski instructors can also benefit from this support plan.
They will be offered compensation of up to 10,000 euros or 20% of their turnover over the same period in 2019.
Overall, the 250 French ski resorts represent 18,000 direct jobs and 120,000 indirect jobs, so this support plan is welcome in these complicated times.