Maintenance in the French West Indies: “a two-speed story”
General question: Does the slow growth in Guyana (apart from KOUROU), the change in the consumer society of Guadeloupe and Martinique affect maintenance activities?
GENERAL ECONOMIC CONSIDERATIONS: SOME NUMBERS.
(Indicators provided by the IEDOM)
Guadeloupe 404,000 inhabitants. ; Martinique 402,000 h. : Guyana 225.751 h.
Changes in the economic sector:
The sectors of export activity (€ 131.5K in 2008 for € 149.2K in 2009 in Guadeloupe, € 376.4K for € 367.5K in Martinique, € 100.2K for € 119.7K in Guyana);
Agriculture fell slightly on Guadeloupe (12.5%), down on Martinique (-3.3%) and structuring in Guyana with a high potential (24.2%).
Agricultural and food industries are down on Guadeloupe (-11.5%) despite good ideas; In spite of efforts on projects of added value in Martinique (-10.5%); In structuring on Guyana (-11.4%).
Consumer goods industries fell sharply in Guadeloupe (-19.9%), collapsed in Martinique (-40.4%), and are structuring for Guyana (-6.3%).
Energy consumption decreased in Guadeloupe (-29.3%), and in Martinique (-37.4%) (data not available for Guyana).
On the import side some figures (2358.2 K € in 2008 for 1799.5 in 2009 in Guadeloupe, 2730.3K € in 2008 for 2024K € in 2009 in Martinique, 1054.9K € for 944.7K € in Guyana) following the social crisis of 2009. There is a trend towards a return to the situation in 2008 over the last quarter in 2011, although there is a great deal of uncertainty about maintaining the business network, namely:
Agriculture declined in Guadeloupe (-12.9%), decreased in Martinique (-16%) and decreased in Guyana (-6.1%).
Agricultural and food industries decreasing on Guadeloupe (-12.5%) ditto in Martinique (-15.6%), the same on Guyana (-10.2%).
Consumer goods industries, down in Guadeloupe (-8.3%), the same as in Martinique (-12.3%), stagnating in Guyana (-2.3%).
Energy decreases in Guadeloupe by (-54.8%), (-38%) in Martinique and (-21.1%) in Guyana.
Agricultural production (-22.7%) in Guadeloupe, but (+ 8.5%) in Martinique.
The aid schemes injected into these same sectors to support investment in 2009 (ERDF) are € 126.4K for € 17.6K paid in Guadeloupe, € 53.8K for € 18.3K paid in Martinique and € 98.2K for 32.2K € paid in Guyana.
Construction activity: 231,965 tons of cement in 2009 with a decrease of (-11.3%) in Guadeloupe; 200,774 t with a decline of (-23.8%) in Martinique; 80.701 t with a decline of (-17.2%) in French Guiana.
Registrations of passenger cars: 14.084 in 2009 with a decrease of (-1.5%) in Guadeloupe; 15.646 with a decrease of (-6.8%) in Martinique, but 4,000 with a record increase of (62%) in Guyana.
Tourism: occupancy rate 50% (-7%) in Guadeloupe, 52.3% (-4.4%) in Martinique and 62.4% (+ 5.92%) in French Guiana
WHAT IS MAINTENANCE IN THIS CONTEXT?
Maintenance now in all this? Well, in general, the attitudes are the same. Little or no real maintenance policy apart from constrained activities; And there again there is much to be said with the principle of subcontracting or outsourcing made up.
Why ? Probably and above all for reasons of short-term management policy. Fear has given rise in these beautiful countries, captains of industries who consider the fragility of their structure of control of their financial commitments in a given axis, parent in the hurry.
Local constraints and their consequences on maintenance
Finding the place to shelter their businesses is already a challenge given the price of land. Equipping them is another, with a factor of 1.45 higher than the “metropolis” price, to which must be added the elements involved in the transformation process subject to the additional costs of approaching, the necessities of a great amplitude Quantity / volume storage to compensate for supply delays, skills problems tailored to the activity and finally the optimization of the efficient time due by the employee, often frustrated by customs and usages. There are also the vagaries of the target market, which do not allow other flow solutions.
So speaking “maintenance” is tantamount to saying that breakdowns are often put in the ranks of unavoidable hazards. Let us quote the case of the stops of the relief groups of the public hospital in Guadeloupe for example: are we aware of the consequences, or were these the consequences? There are also shutdowns of certain air services for several days, production stoppages forced or constrained by the prefect of certain agro-food industry activities for lack of maintenance of equipment, and consequently for insalubrity and lack of ‘hygiene. We can also mention the state of the public facilities on which one regularly puts “patches”, the closings, stops and abandonments of hotels … All this takes place in the most perfect discretion, since long ago one continues to throw and swell The “discharge”, open dumps of everything that must disappear for want of maintenance, and one redeems everything in the new one to replace it. The ultra consumption is very pleasing here.
For the real problem of random maintenance is the short lifespan of the equipment and equipment that must be renewed permanently and their inability to provide what they are given for.
Consequence of the inadequacy of the equipment to the local context
Another point that the Caribbean departments have not yet taken note of concerns the quality of incoming products and equipment. Indeed, the logic would be that, given the distance situation and the well-known parameters such as seismicity, cyclones, air salinity, major sunshine, etc., these incoming equipment should be constrained to compliance with rules related to their durability / Reliability and their adaptation to the climatic environment. This would avoid many blunders and the quantities of products to be discarded and rejected, as a result of wear and premature aging of the products once they are “immersed” in the local climate context.
Conclusion: the reign of healing and coping, and the need to get out of it
As a result, the conclusion is that the maintenance remains and has remained for more than thirty years in a curative logic. When this maintenance is imposed by the garages for example for the maintenance of the guarantee of the vehicles sold, the prices and methods are so high that very quickly the consumer returns to his old habits. In Creole it says something like this: “Unravel pa sin” then!
The crisis or the tightening of the economic situation could be good because it would perhaps better take into account the need to maintain and maintain, in addition to the need to use and use. The problem is to integrate these costs into the line of eligible expenditure and that this message is understood by decision-makers. It is not easy because few partners want to distance and finance these exchanges. Here, too, the positions or positions of one and the other have more value in their eyes on the medio-political field than on the real ground work. Other actors act in the shade and discretion, but are confronted with the technocratic power very present today and the epidermic reactions of a people wounded in its history.
In addition to thirty years of presence in these regions, we can see many advances, structuring elements, methodology, organization; But, at the same time, a lot of brakes, restraint, and fear of growing up.
Where do we go for the future? Adult and responsible driving, with the price to pay for it, and this in the overall structural dimension.
President of AFIM Outre Mer