The European Commissioner for Economic Affairs, Pierre Moscovici, asked Thursday, November 7 to France “more structural efforts and deficit reduction” in budgetary matters. “The structural effort remains quite weak,” Moscovici said at a press briefing on the sidelines of the Commission's economic forecast presentation.
The opinion Brussels has to make on November 20 on the French budget “will undoubtedly insist on the need to improve it,” he added. According to forecasts published by the European Commission on Thursday, the French budget deficit will reach 2.2% of its GDP in 2020 and 2021, after 3.1% in 2019.
The European executive had already summoned at the end of October Paris to provide explanations on its 2020 budget, criticizing its lack of effort to clean up its public finances, at the risk of deviating once again from the European rules.
“We are determined to continue the recovery of our public finances,” said French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire. According to the Commission, the French outlook will not reduce its large debt, which flirts with 100% of GDP (98.9% in 2019, 98.9% in 2020, 99.2% in 2021).
Forecasts for growth are slightly above the euro area average: 1.3% in 2019, 1.3% in 2020 and 1.2% in 2021.
France “is rather well positioned in the context of global and European slowdown,” said Mr Moscovici. “This growth is mainly based on domestic demand and services (…) It is therefore less penalized than other economies by the decline of the manufacturing industry,” said the former French Minister of Economy (2012). -2014).