Sunday, April 5, 2020

“France has the means to overcome the economic shock of containment”

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ANALYSIS – It’s 140 billion that would be lost if the French were to remain cloistered for eight weeks, but our annual GDP amounts to 2,400 billion, explains our columnist.

For Bruno Le Maire (photo), “when you count your dead, you don’t count your billions”. LUDOVIC MARIN / AFP

The stock market or life: we should not be surprised or even regret the collapse of the financial markets. While more than 3 billion earthlings are confined to their homes, in a more or less authoritarian manner, and the World Health Organization lists on March 25 18,589 deaths due to Covid-19, “When we count his dead, you don’t count your billions ”. The expression of Bruno Le Maire, the Minister of Economy and Finance, perfectly sums up the spirit of the hour, from Paris to Beijing, from Tokyo to Washington.

The “Spanish flu” of 1918-1919, our closest reference, had killed some 250,000 people in France alone, including the poet Guillaume Apollinaire. No one then thought of the material consequences of such a bloodletting. They had been, so to speak, “drowned” in the astonishing disaster of 1914-1918. This does not mean that we did not count at the time, as evidenced by the French slogan of the interwar period, “Germany will pay”, to the source

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