“We are part of the invisible professions”, deplores Matthieu Jeandel, strategy vice-president of the Newrest group, a Toulouse-based company specializing in airline catering, whose activity showed an 82% drop between January and March. “In the aeronautics and tourism sectors, there are flag bearers, he insists, citing the Airbus industrial locomotive. And, between the two, there are the airport jobs. “
Baggage handlers, security guards, ramp agents and security guards make up this sector that provides jobs. About a hundred companies are installed on the Toulouse-Blagnac airport platform and employ 4,500 people – not to mention the staff of the ATB company (Toulouse-Blagnac Airport), manager of the airport. The aeronautical and airport zone, which extends well beyond this platform, has 1,970 companies and 90,000 jobs.
But, with the air transport crisis, an entire ecosystem is shaking. Travel restrictions and border closures to stem the pandemic weighed on air traffic in the first quarter. The sixth airport in France was idling, with 19% of activity, compared to the same period, two years earlier, and welcomed more than 409,000 passengers. However, in 2018 as in 2019, the airport was close to 10 million travelers throughout the year.
“We already know that terminals will not reopen”
For the summer period, forecasts are revised upwards. ATB anticipates a recovery of air transport up to 42%. Nothing to reassure the leaders of these companies. “We already know that terminals will not reopen”, says Guy Roulleau, Managing Director of Samsic, a group that employs around fifty people responsible, for example, for checking in and sorting baggage at Toulouse-Blagnac. “Our airport division saw its turnover drop to 100 million euros in 2020, against 300 million in 2019. The company, with strong backs, can support this subsidiary, but it cannot last a hundred years”, he warns.
“We don’t do the round. We just want to be supported for the restart of the activity ”, Guy Roulleau, boss of Samsic
“With the level of recovery envisaged, we will not have the volumes of activity necessary to absorb the costs and relaunch the activity under operating conditions of acceptable profitability., regrets Matthieu Jeandel. We will end up with − 75% of turnover, while increasing losses. And we run the risk of no longer being eligible for partial activity with no out-of-pocket costs for the employer. “ Because at 1is July, the allocation of this support system will be subject to an 80% drop in activity. The leaders then fear consequences on employment, estimating that more than 8,000 jobs would then be threatened.
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