Further reforms in France can drive growth, improve public finances and boost social cohesion

Macron 2019.jpg

Mr Emmanuel MACRON, President of France. Copyright: European Union Event: European Council – March 2019 (Day 1)

This article is brought to you in association with OECD.


The French economy has slowed, with weaker growth and employment prospects weighing on living standards and well-being. Policy should focus on long-term strategies to revitalise growth, improve public finances, create more and better jobs and ensure a more inclusive and cohesive society, according to a new report from the OECD.

The latest OECD Economic Survey of France looks at the factors behind the country’s economic performance, as well as policies that can boost productivity and competitiveness, which will be key to improving future living standards. The Survey projects growth of 1.3% this year and next, which will be insufficient to bring about a rapid decline in unemployment and a significant improvement in public finances without further reforms.

The Survey, presented in Paris by OECD Secretary-General Angel Gurría and French Minister of Economy and Finance Bruno Le Maire, encourages the government to move forward with both ongoing reforms and those proposed by the OECD, which combined could increase GDP per capita by 5% at a ten-year horizon. The reforms are designed to boost income for households in the lower half of the income distribution, making growth more inclusive.

The Survey also draws attention to a wide range of downside risks, principally linked to the global slowdown, as well as ongoing social unrest in France. It recommends that France prioritise the redistributive effects of future economic reforms. This could require additional efforts to ensure greater social acceptability and better implementation of policies. In this context, the Survey looks at additional measures that could complement the ongoing reform agenda and ensure more sustainable and inclusive growth.

“There is a real need to address the social challenges of long-term unemployment, difficulty in joining the labour market and weak social mobility,” Mr Gurría said. “The government has undertaken courageous reforms to boost economic activity, increase the disposable income of low-wage earners and put public finance on a firmer footing. France should capitalise on this reform agenda and take further measures to improve public spending efficiency, increase high-quality jobs and ensure that the economy of the future works for everyone.”

The Survey underlines the need to strengthen skills and greater inclusion of low‑skilled workers in the labour force. This would require increasing the quality of education, reforms to ensure that high-quality training programmes benefit everyone and measures to reduce the use of short-term contracts.

Improving the quality of public spending would improve the fiscal position and create space for lower tax rates in the long run, particularly on labour. Precise targets for controlling public expenditure are needed, alongside increased focus on ensuring that investment and social spending are well targeted to contribute to stronger and greener growth, the Survey said.

Continuing to increase environmental taxation while supporting the most affected populations would also ease the transition towards a greener economy. Moreover, reform of the pension system is needed.

Continuing to reduce administrative barriers to entry and unduly restrictive regulations would raise competitive pressures and ensure favourable conditions for young and dynamic firms, boosting productivity gains and innovation.

the sting Milestones

Featured Stings

Can we feed everyone without unleashing disaster? Read on

These campaigners want to give a quarter of the UK back to nature

How to build a more resilient and inclusive global system

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

The EU Diplomacy in North Korea promotes peace or war?

The Chinese retail revolution is heading west

UN health agency spotlights stalled effort to close health divide across Europe, in new report

State aid: Commission approves €520 million Italian scheme to compensate the trade fairs and congress sector for damages suffered due to the coronavirus outbreak

COVID-19 vaccines: EU must respond with unity and solidarity

Financial transactions tax gets go ahead

This company lets you set your own salary

The different ways of care: Is there a general rule to follow?

EU Trade Ministers come together in a desperate attempt to save TTIP

CLIMATE CHANGE FOCUS: Tunisia coastline in need of climate cash boost

Mental health in the context of a pandemic: social distance

Why is black plastic packaging so hard to recycle?

Logo Mania: A call to action to our crisis of connection

These 5 foods are under threat from climate change

EU economic governance: More exploitation for the weaker countries

The next talent opportunity for the digital workplace? Neurodiversity

An economist explains how to go carbon neutral in our lifetime

Deaths from far-right terrorism have more than tripled in the West

The cost of dying

What Europe’s SMEs need to do for a cyber-secure future

How long will people live in the future?

Insurer CEOs Reveal Marketing Strategies that Communicate the True Value of Insurance Products & Services to the Customer

UNESCO lists wrestling, reggae and raiho-shin rituals as global treasures to be preserved

In Mozambique, it’s ‘a matter of the heart’ says Guterres, lauding the cyclone-struck nation’s ‘undeniable moral authority’

China in My Suburbs

Coronavirus: Commission launches data sharing platform for researchers

Environment and health at increasing risk from growing weight of ‘e-waste’

Health spending set to outpace GDP growth to 2030

Aviation Strategy for Europe: Commission signs landmark aviation agreements with China

The impact of mobile and rapid digital adoption on how India consumes

Coronavirus: Commission adopts new exceptional support measures for the wine sector

Europe eyes to replace US as China’s prime foreign partner

Women in leadership: closing the gender gap in medicine

UN launches plan to promote peace, inclusive growth in Africa’s Sahel

Libya on verge of civil war, threatening ‘permanent division’, top UN official warns Security Council

Global public-private collaboration tackles cybersecurity skills gap

Finland is a world leader in clean energy. Here’s what’s driving its success

Iceland’s slowdown underlines the need to fix structural issues

The new era of Matriarchy?

UN political chief calls for dialogue to ease tensions in Venezuela; Security Council divided over path to end crisis

How to create a world where healthcare is a right, not a luxury

Accelerating a more sustainable industrial revolution with digital manufacturing

EU Budget 2021 deal: supporting the recovery

Blockchain is not a magic bullet for security. Can it be trusted?

6 ways data sharing can shape a better future

Millions of Afghans have ‘voted not just for a president, but also for democracy’, UN Assembly told

Doctors are humans too: the benefits of embracing your mental status

‘No shortcuts to a healthier world’: WHO chief sets out health priorities for the decade

G7 summit: Trump Vs. G6 leaders on trade and climate change

How China Mended My Heart

How AI can accelerate the search for treatments for emerging and intractable diseases

European Union disenchanted with Turkey

These are the biggest hurdles on the path to clean energy

UN chief welcomes possibility of resumed talks between US and North Korea

Global Trade Identity can be the cornerstone of paperless trade

Sahel and Central Africa: €210 million in EU humanitarian aid

Innovative finance tools could protect cities from climate change

The DNA of the future retail CEO

EU adopts new €100 million assistance package to benefit refugees and local communities in Lebanon, Jordan, and Iraq

Strict alcohol laws which cut intake more than 40 per cent in Russia, linked to historically high life expectancy

More Stings?

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s