France deals with an inconvenient truth after audit of public finances

France's President Francois Hollande is to pursue budget rigour (photo:dpa)
France's President Francois Hollande is to pursue budget rigour (photo:dpa)

After the electoral speeches now is the time for reality in France. The Cour des Comptes (France’s audit office) has published a report warning of the alarming state of France’s public finances. Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault has urged the French to rally behind a ‘crushing’ debt burden after the state audit warned of a 43 billion euro budget hole. The country is at a crossroads. Socialist President Francois Hollande and his government are about to hit the wealthy and big business with tax increases, limit the salaries of top earners in state-controlled companies, while introducing minimal spending cuts as they try to juggle campaign pledges with bringing France’s budget deficit in line with EU guidelines.

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