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Christine Lagarde, Minister for the Economy said on 'France Inter' radio yesterday she "sincerely hopes that zero social charges for very small companies will continue until 30 June 2010."
The French government decided last year that from 4 December 2008 so-called 'very small companies' with less than 10 employees (TPE) which pay the minimum salary (SMIC) do not have to pay any social security and unemployment insurance contributions for new employees in order to help them through the economic crisis.
All social payments, which average 185 Euro per employee per month, are borne by the government for the period of one year. According to Laurent Wauquiez, Secretary of State for Labour, "500,000 new recruits have already benefitted from the scheme since 4 December 2008 and 1/3 would not have been employed without it."
The government scheme applies to full-time, part-time and contract workers. Temporary employees are excluded from the scheme.