Policy responses for Monaco - HSRM


Policy responses for Monaco

6. Measures in other sectors

6.1 Measures in other sectors

Many MEASURES IN OTHER SECTORS beyond the immediate scope of the health system are being taken to prevent further spread of the virus. This section contains information on many of these areas, including border and travel restrictions and economic and fiscal measures, among others.

On 28th April 2020, the Government of Monaco announced the lifting of the containment as from 4th May 2020. It presented the sanitary conditions to be respected from this date and the three stages of the resumption of activity.

Sanitary conditions for post lockdown restart

The lifting of the containment requires the implementation of barrier gestures, as well as 10 other indispensable sanitary conditions:

- Alcohol-based sanitizing gel available everywhere;
- Regular deep cleaning of places of passage and contact;
- Wearing masks is compulsory in public areas, on public transport and in shops;
- Wearing gloves is not recommended;
- A health distance of 1.5 meters is the norm; it is implemented by limiting the number of people per square meter, the principle of appointment scheduling and the ventilation of flows;
- The use of plexiglass is recommended at the cash registers of shops;
- A permanent control of the respect of these standards will be carried out;
- In health care practices, hairdressing salons and dentists, booking by appointment will be mandatory to avoid waiting rooms;
- No public gathering of more than 5 people;
- No reopening of sports areas and playgrounds.

First stage: Resumption of activity on 4 May 2020

On May 4, 2020, the following reopened:

- All shops (one person/4m²), except for cafés, restaurants;
- Places of worship (1.5 m. safety distance + mask);
- Hairdressing salons, beauty salons or treatment rooms by appointment only;
- Private and public worksites by respecting specific health safety measures;
- Continuation of take-away sales (with queue control);
- Resumption of a normal service by the Monaco Bus Company;
- Prohibition of stopovers by cruise ships;
- Exits from the port authorized for private boats;
- Partial resumption of traffic at the Heliport (private charters);
- Finally, resumption of activity within the Civil Service, while continuing to give priority to teleworking and remote videoconferencing. However, the administrations called upon to receive the public will reopen their doors.

Second stage: gradual reopening of schools from 11 May 2020

From 11 May, schools will gradually and partially reopen. The Prince's Government has chosen to give priority to classes with exams and obey a strict framework of respect for health standards: compulsory masks for teachers and pupils, no school canteen, functioning in half-groups, no sports classes.

The school calendar is established as follows:

- May 11th: return of the high school students (classes of 1ère, Terminale and BTS);
- 18 May: return of secondary school students (classes of 6ème, 3ème and school adaptation and integration [AIS]);
- 25 May: return of primary school students (CP, CM2 and AIS classes).

All the other classes did not return and continued their educational work at a distance. There will be no reopening of the Academy of Music.

Third stage: Reopening of cultural, sports and entertainment areas

From the beginning of June, and only if the sanitary conditions observed during the first two phases allow it, the Government is considering the reopening of the following areas:

- Restaurants and cafes;
- Games rooms;
- Exhibition halls;
- Cinemas;
- Sports activities (mainly individual outdoor sports);
- Beaches and swimming pools;
- Sports halls.

In order to support the economy during this period of health crisis, the Government of Monaco has taken exceptional and temporary measures.

Social measures

For employers and employees, the use of telework is in principle compulsory. If teleworking is not possible and the company suffers a drop in activity, a system of Reinforced Temporary Total Unemployment has been set up. It allows the employee to immediately receive an indemnity corresponding to 70% of his gross salary, paid by his employer and then fully refunded by the State. The partial activity allowance is not subject to social security contributions. The same applies to the salary maintained in whole or in part by the employer, but these periods give the employee the right to medical and family benefits as well as to the free validation of pension rights.

In addition, following the closure of nurseries and schools, employee parents for whom teleworking is not possible may receive compensation for childcare at home. The employee then receives daily allowances from the social security fund, corresponding to 50% of his or her average daily salary calculated on the basis of gross remuneration received from their employer over the previous 12 months. Employers are requested to ensure that their employees continue to receive their wages without a waiting period. However, if the latter cannot ensure it, the social security fund pays a compensation supplement to the employee on behalf of the State, so as to guarantee them a total compensation equivalent to their average gross salary, within the limit of a ceiling of €1,800 per month.

In order to limit the impact of the health crisis on employment, the Government of Monaco has decided to prohibit dismissals during the confinement period, except for dismissals for serious misconduct proven under the supervision of the Labour Inspectorate.

Finally, from the point of view of public car parks, employees can obtain a free parking card if they must imperatively go to their place of work, or a suspension of their subscription contract if they are temporarily unemployed.

Since March 2020, the Social Security Funds of Monaco have been granting (upon request) staggered payments of social security contributions to both employers and self-employed workers in the Principality.

Support for Businesses

For the self-employed and companies, several public aids have been put in place.

The Extraordinary Minimum Income is designed to support self-employed workers who carry out an activity in their own name and who are severely affected by the crisis, by providing them with a minimum monthly income of €1800 per month, to which is added a flat-rate aid of €3200.

Company Aid, on the other hand, is a subsidy of €5000 per month granted to Monégasque companies which achieved a turnover before tax of less than 1.5 million euros in 2019 and have suffered a monthly decline in activity of at least 50%.

In addition, with regard to business rents, there is exemption from rent and rental charges for shopkeepers who have been forced to temporarily close and rent commercial premises belonging to the State or the Commune. Companies and self-employed persons can also request the staggered payment of their electricity and internet bills.

A ministerial decision is expected to be taken on the possibility for employers in the Principality to pay a premium of up to €1,000 to employees who are particularly exposed in the context of the health crisis. This premium should be exempt from social security contributions.

Financial and Tax Measures

Financial and fiscal measures have been introduced to strengthen the support mechanisms for businesses.

Entrepreneurs can apply to banks for a cash credit or an overdraft authorization, for an amount of less than €50,000  for traders, craftsmen and very small businesses, or for an amount of between €50,000 and €500,000 for companies, which will be guaranteed by the State through the Guarantee Fund.
The scheme for subsidizing loans taken out with credit institutions in the Principality, which may be granted by the State as aid to companies established in Monaco, has been extended to cash loans applied for by companies in the Principality. This system of interest subsidies makes it possible to reduce the real interest rate granted for this loan to zero. In addition, entrepreneurs can benefit from a three-month deferment of VAT payments and staggered payment of social security contributions.

The “Commission d'Assistance aux Entreprises en Difficulté” will be reactivated in a new form, in order to respond as well as possible to the difficulties encountered by businesses in the context of the health crisis.

Foreign policy measures

Since the introduction of the lockdown, there have been checks at the borders of the Principality to ensure compliance with the measures restricting travel. Finally, anyone returning from abroad must remain in quarantine for 14 days.

Considering the particular situation of Monaco, a micro-state of 2km2, landlocked by French territory, travel remained possible between France and the Principality, on the double condition that there was a just reason (e.g. professional or health) and, if for work, a professional travel certificate duly completed by the employer.

Buildings of the Caisse Autonome des Retraites (CAR)

For owners of real estate, upon request the RAC can allow rent to be paid in instalments.