Defined by law and regulation on 23 March 2020, in accordance with the framework set by the European Commission on 19 March 2020, government-backed loans (PGE) were one of the main support mechanisms for businesses to deal with the health crisis. These loans were granted by the banks until 30 June 2022, guaranteed between 70% and 90% by the central government, and capped at 25% of annual turnover - or, for new businesses, two years’ wage bill. During the first lockdown, they were massively subscribed: of the €137 billion of PGEs granted by banks as at 31 December 2021, more than 70% were granted between March and June 2020. The report published today by the Court of Accounts assesses the implementation and results of this public policy by answering three questions: have the design and rollout of PGEs made it possible to effectively meet the cash needs of businesses given the other existing tools? Have they facilitated the medium- to long-term survival of businesses and have relevant support mechanisms been defined? To what extent has the calibration of the scheme resulted in a balanced sharing of risks and costs between businesses, banks and central government?