French President Emmanuel Macron speaks during a video news conference at Elysee Palace in Paris, France, May 18, 2020. (Photo: Agencies)
PARIS -- French President Emmanuel Macron on Tuesday vowed to massively back the auto sector to help it recover as the coronavirus crisis has taken a toll on the country's key industry.
"The health crisis massively and brutally brought the French car sector to a halt. This is a part of our economy, thousands of jobs," Macron said on Twitter. "Our support will be massively amplified."
Macron is to visit a car equipment factory in empales, near Le Touquet (Pas-de-Calais), where he is expected to unveil a support plan later Tuesday.
The automobile sector, which offers 400,000 direct jobs in France, had been hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic. It is the second sector to have a specific recover plan after tourism.
In a statement released on May 1, French Automobile Manufacturers Committee (CCFA) said sales of French brands plunged by 84.2 percent in April due to national coronavirus lockdown.
PSA, the country's leading car manufacturer, saw 84.4 percent drop in its sales to 10,098 units, while Renault, the country's second largest carmaker, offered 7,148 units, sharply down from 44,348 vehicle sold in April 2019.