- Title: From fishmongers to corner stores, Paris shops suffer losses due to strikes
- Date: 3rd January 2020
- Summary: PARIS, FRANCE (JANUARY 3, 2020) (REUTERS) PEOPLE WALKING ON RUE MONTORGUEIL, A COMMERCIAL STREET WITH CAFES, SHOPS AND RESTAURANTS FLOWERS DISPLAYED OUTSIDE SHOP SHOP SIGNS VARIOUS OF FINANCE MINISTER BRUNO LE MAIRE WALKING ON RUE MONTORGUEIL LE MAIRE WALKING TOWARDS FISH SHOP SHRIMP DISPLAYED IN SHOP LE MAIRE ASKING FISHMONGER BRUNO MAHE (French): Do you have an idea of the estimated loss of revenue (due to strikes)?" FISHMONGER BRUNO MAHE SAYING (French): "Fifty percent less." LE MAIRE SAYING (French): "Fifty percent less?!" MAHE SAYING (French): "Well, yes. There's no transportâ€¦" LE MAIRE SAYING (French): "And lots of problems with getting supplies as well?" MAHE SAYING (French): "Yes, that as well. There's much less fish." LE MAIRE SPEAKING TO SHOP OWNERS (SOUNDBITE) (French) FINANCE MINISTER BRUNO LE MAIRE SAYING: "We have done the maximum so that shopkeepers suffer as little as possible due to these strikes, and that they are helped by the government. And we will do everything needed so that no business shuts down because of these strikes, which have now lasted for several weeks." JOURNALISTS AROUND LE MAIRE (SOUNDBITE) (French) FINANCE MINISTER BRUNO LE MAIRE SAYING: "Discussions will restart next week. I hope that these discussions will be as constructive as possible, that all the unions respond to the prime minister's gesture of goodwill, and that in the coming days, we find a way to compromise. I say it again - perpetual strike is not a favorable future for the French people. It's not what will allow us give our fellow countrymen the freedom to work, the serenity and the prosperity that they aspire for." LA MAIRE HAVING PHOTO TAKEN WITH GROCERY STORE SUPERVISOR, FLATENIN DIAKITE VARIOUS OF DIAKITE WORKING INSIDE U EXPRESS GROCERY STORE (SOUNDBITE) (French) U EXPRESS GROCERY STORE SUPERVISOR, FLATENIN DIAKITE, SAYING: "At some point, this has to stop, because we are really exhausted. From the beginning (of the strikes) until today, we've been really exhausted. We can no longer continue. Everyone I meet says the same thing. Everyone is tired, we can no longer continue, we have no life anymore because of this strike." EMPTY TABLES AT LA GRILLE MONTORGUEIL BISTRO COFFEE MACHINE LA GRILLE MONTORGUEIL OWNER LAURENT NEGRE AT BAR (SOUNDBITE) (French) LA GRILLE MONTORGUEIL OWNER LAURENT NEGRE SAYING: "There was a bit of a lack of cheer in the holiday season. We didn't have the Christmas atmosphere, because people were struggling so yeah, there was a lack of smiles in the overall ambiance on the street." BISTRO MENU EMPTY TABLES AT RESTAURANT (SOUNDBITE) (French) LA GRILLE MONTORGUEIL OWNER LAURENT NEGRE SAYING: "Employees have a right not to spend three hours getting home in the evening. And we also have a right not to face a 30 percent loss in business in a month that is crucial for us. It's not a problem for me that people are protesting to keep their social rights. But it shouldn't be a problem for them to allow us to work." COFFEE ON TABLE CUSTOMERS SITTING AT TABLE RAIL TRACKS AT GARE DE LYON STATION DURING STRIKE SNCF PERSONNEL WALKING ON PLATFORM NEXT TO TRAIN PEOPLE WALKING AWAY FROM PLATFORMS GARE DE LYON STATION
- Embargoed: 17th January 2020 12:49
- Keywords: Paris shops economic impact holiday season pension strike revenue
- Location: PARIS, FRANCE
- City: PARIS, FRANCE
- Country: France
- Reuters ID: LVA001BUMCOCN
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Business owners in a major Paris shopping street said they had suffered losses of between 30 and 50 percent compared with last year due to the nearly month-long transport strike against pension reforms as a minister visited the area in a show of support.
French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire visited shops in the busy Rue Montorgueil in central Paris, assuring business owners they would be entitled to some relief.
The fish shop Soguiza has suffered a 50% loss in revenue, its owner Bruno Mahe told Le Maire, as usual customers were hampered by transport problems.
Slow traffic on highways, due to a higher number of vehicles, have also disrupted deliveries, that usually come from a big food market just outside the capital.
Employees who must commute to work, such as grocery store supervisor Flatenin Diakite, have been spending hours in crowded trains and buses, which are running on a severely disrupted schedule.
"Everyone is tired, we can no longer continue, we have no life anymore because of this strike," Diakite said.
At La Grille Montorgueil restaurant, owner Laurent Negre said he had seen revenue drop by a third compared to the month of November - his business has only been open for four months - and bemoaned a lack of Christmas spirit.
"It's not a problem for me that people are protesting to keep their social rights. But it shouldn't be a problem for them to allow us to work," Negre said.
A spokesman for the GNI independent hotels and restaurants federation said shortly before Christmas that revenue loss in Paris stood at some 30 to 40% year-on-year for hotels, 40% percent for cafes and bars and 50% for restaurants.
(Production: Michaela Cabrera, Antony Paone)
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