22 January, 2014

The Maine-et-Loire economic authorities warn political representatives about the seriousness of current circumstances

En adressant aux élus et chefs d'entreprise de Maine-et-Loire des voeux conjoints, les présidents des trois principaux organismes économiques du département ont marqué la gravité de la situation et la nécessité de réformes fortes et mises en oeuvre dès après les municipales. Des mesures qui ne concernent pas seulement les habitants et les actifs mais aussi tous ceux qui les représentent. 

In many occasions, the content of an event is more important than its form. But that is not always true. The New Year ceremony organized on January 20th at the Greniers Saint-Jean by the three consular chambers illustrated that the way a message is expressed may be as important as the message itself. While the Angers political representatives are more divided than ever, given the closeness of the municipal elections, the presidents of the Chambre d'agriculture, Chambre de commerce et d'industrie and Chambre de métiers of Maine-et-Loire were gathered to adress, in front of political decision-makers, their best wishes to their members, craftsmen, farmers and managers, but beyond them, to the local economy which desperately needs supports... and unity.

Their tone was the same of a warning signal. According to Gérard Aubry, the Chambre de métiers' president, "it is henceforth the activity, the growth, indeed the survival of companies, little, medium or large which is becoming decisive for our country" while his colleage, François Beaupère (Chambre d'agriculture) pointed out that "We are loosing volumes [of outputs], this is a real danger". For the Chambre de commerce et d'industrie's president, Eric Groud, "tonight, we put a turbulent, economically difficult 2013 year behind us, with a sham recovery which, insidiously, may lead our companies in their ultimate corner".

Given the seriousness of the situation, the three chairmen urged the audience, and among it the Maine-et-Loire prefect, the Maine-et-Loire senators, the Angers Loire Métropole president, the Angers mayor, "to take a global view [provided that] all our ways of thinking are upset [by the current economic mutation]". Considering than "the quarrels" between the Conseil général and Angers city were "fruitless", the economic delegates, through Mr. Groud's speech, wished that the "Responsability agreement" recently announced by the French president be source of administrative simplifications and reduction of public expenses. Regarding the territorial reform (the decrease of the number of regions), it is wished that "the scheme be based on economic projects rather than administrative concerns" and that "it should be implemented straight after the municipal elections".

The candidates to mayor office having yet promised that such reforms would be applied inside Angers, like the merger of town and department structures, will be - if elected - carefully watched.

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