World News

French firms request 3.8 billion euros in state-guaranteed loans: minister

PARIS (Reuters) – French companies have sought nearly four billion euros ($4.4 billion) in loans guaranteed by the state to help them through the coronavirus crisis, France’s finance minister said on Tuesday.

The government offered earlier this month to guarantee up to 300 billion euros – 15% of gross domestic product – in business loans to help firms cope with a plunge in cashflow.

“At the moment I’m speaking to you we already have requests for 3.8 billion euros, ” Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire told Radio Classique, adding that 21,000 companies had made a request.

(Reporting by Leigh Thomas, editing by Louise Heavens)