Auditors urge French government to bring deficit down

30 Jun 17

France’s new government must make cuts to tackle the country’s deficit after the last administration over spend its budget in the final months, the French public audit office has said.

The public sector deficit in France will come to 3.2% of economic output this year unless spending is reigned in, the Cour des Comptes [Court of Auditors] believes. This is above the previous Socialist-led government’s 2.8% target.

This comes nearly two months after the European Union also called on the new French president Emmanuel Macron to meet his election to bring his country’s deficit back in line.

Macron’s government must make savings of up to €5bn ($5.7 billion) if it is to achieve its promise to post a deficit of 3% or less this year.

France’s gap between spending and revenues will fall from 3.4% to 3% of GDP this year – the maximum level considered safe by EU budget laws, the European Commission found. Although this was a downgrade from previous forecasts of 2.9%.

Independent moderate Macron swept to victory in France’s presidential elections in May this year vowing to ‘bridge the gaps’ that were dividing society.

His new party won a secure majority in the parliamentary elections that took place in early June.

France has been plagued recently by economic stagnation and widespread unemployment.

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