Saturday, August 8, 2020

Covid-19 crisis: the Oise fears a massacre in the building sector

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When the building goes, everything goes. An adage that has no reason to be in this post-confinement period. If the vast majority of construction sites have been able to resume, only 65% ​​have normal activity in the Hauts-de-France according to a study carried out by the network of the Regional Economic Cell for Construction (CERC). The building sector is suffering and several organizations fear a massacre as early as September.

Because the order books do not fill up. And no state body seems more privileged than another. “Currently, we are finishing the sites that we started before confinement,” explains Benjamin Lassalle, president of the Capeb (confederation of crafts and small construction companies) of the Oise. But in September and October, we don’t know what we’re going to do. We only have small requests. We need to project ourselves! “

Overall, individuals are still reluctant to bring a craftsman into their home. And the postponement of the second round of the municipal elections put the launch of certain public contracts on standby. “As for the calls for tenders already made, they will be spent, raises Philippe Morin, the president of the French building federation (FFB) of Oise. The new quotes will take into account the Covid-19 effect. Will community budgets follow? “

The implementation of health precautions (purchase of protective masks, development of living bases, waste management, transport of employees, etc.) has indeed generated additional costs for the sites, estimated between 10% and 20% by different organizations of the sector. “We are in the middle of a discussion about who will pay for this additional cost,” continues Philippe Morin. If it is our responsibility, our businesses will work at a loss because their profit margin is on average 2%. “

According to Benjamin Lasalle, the third amending finance bill, presented by the government on June 10 to support the recovery of the construction industry, is therefore not satisfactory. “In September, it will be too late! Today is the time to do something. “

A heavy blow for apprentices

Capeb estimates that 20 to 30% of the approximately 4,000 construction companies in the Oise will close their doors. “These closings will occur at best at the end of the year, at worst from this month of July,” thinks Philippe Morin.

These bankruptcies and the delicate situation of the sector will have other consequences. Companies will think twice before taking on an apprentice. So, at the apprenticeship training center (CFA) in Agnetz, we are worried.

“This year, we only had 500 young people while our capacity is 950,” explains an official. We are afraid that these new events will impact us more especially since our three open days could not be organized. “

“The call for posted workers will increase”

Some partner companies of the establishment have already closed. “We help apprentices who were under contract with them to find a business,” continues the establishment. For Philippe Morin, “the labor problem that we are already experiencing will be amplified in the years to come. The call for posted workers will increase. “

So, the FFB demands an exemption from charges and not a postponement, and calls on communities to “urgently launch work sites”. According to the study carried out by the CERC network, 35% of the sites stopped on June 12 in the region were under public contracting.

The Capeb pleads for its part for a return of VAT at a rate of 5.5% for all renovation works, the removal of sidewalk and parking rights for professional vehicles and to “increase the renovations through the possibility of deviating from the local urban plan (PLU) ”.

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