“The fight against the epidemic is therefore not over, but I am happy for this first victory against the virus,” he said.
As of Saturday, France registered 24 new deaths from COVID-19, bringing the country’s toll to 29,398, according to figures released by the National Public Health Agency.
The latest single-day deaths were fewer than the 28 fatalities recorded a day before. Saturday also saw 526 new cases of infection, down from Friday’s 726, taking the tally to 156,813.
Hospital admissions continued to decline for the second month in a row. Some 10,909 people remain hospitalized for coronavirus infection, compared with 11,124 recorded on Friday. Patients who needed to be put on ventilator dropped by 8 to 871.
In his fourth prime-time address since the coronavirus outbreak in early March, Macron acknowledged that the unprecedented health crisis has revealed France‘s “flaws and weaknesses”, such as dependence on other continents for certain products, cumbersome organization, social and regional inequalities.
“Our strengths, we will reinforce them, our weaknesses, we will correct them quickly and strongly,” he pledged. “I want us to learn all the lessons from what we have experienced.”
“The moment we are going through…forces us to open a new stage in order to regain full control of our lives, our destiny, in France and in Europe,” he said.
Laying out the economic and social agenda for the next two years, Macron stressed that the “first priority is to rebuild a strong, ecological, sovereign and united economy.”
With the aim, he vowed to bolster research and improve the attractiveness of the country’s technological, industrial and agricultural sectors, with a major focus on green activities to create the jobs for the future.
Furthermore, the head of state pledged “a massive investment in education, training, and jobs for youth,” and more “stimulus that will better protect seniors and the poorest.”
Macron said he will address the nation again in July to “launch the first actions” of the “new path” for the final two years of his mandate.