Co-creating evidence-based business roadmaps and policy solutions for enhancing coastal-rural collaboration and synergies

How the economic activities of MAL4 were impacted by COVID-19

MAL4's economic activities were impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, in particular by the two lockdown periods (Spring and Autumn) imposed by the government. Specific aids have been put in place by the government and the Nouvelle-Aquitaine region to help companies make the transition.

Agriculture: Against the backdrop of the Covid-19 pandemic, “short-circuit retail” is turning into the farming industry of the future. This supports important work carried out by the Department of Charente-Maritime and Chamber of Agriculture to develop this approach within our territory. Actions and tools are currently being developed to meet the challenges of developing short supply chains and developing added value. Up until now, there has been no legal mechanism to finance additional farmworkers as a result of COVID-19 cases, or to assist with childcare costs for farmers in the case of school closures. The government has just remedied this situation by creating a dedicated allowance.

Local ports and other infrastructure have been in demand throughout this crisis, and have proved their worth in keeping our territory supplied.

Shellfish farming: the revenue of oyster farmers in Charente-Maritime has fallen by at least 80% since the start of the pandemic, according to the Regional Committee of Shellfish Farming. Almost all of their usual sales locations (local markets, restaurants, wholesalers, etc.) have either been shut down or found themselves in severe financial difficulty. However, oysters continue to grow, with fewer opportunities to sell them.  This industry will typically generate 50 to 70% of its annual income during the festive season. Producers are therefore hoping that there will be no further lockdown, which would be disastrous for their livelihoods.

Tourism: As part of the economic stimulus package led by Charentes Tourisme, 17% of professionals surveyed (1800 total) are at risk of bankruptcy within 6 months. Because of this, the Charentes Tourism and Economic Development Agency is developing a new plan to support businesses: “ACT” (Accompagner Collectivement le Tourisme).