France can cut public deficit promises Chirac

7th January 2005, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, Jan 7 (AFP) - French President Jacques Chirac insisted on Friday that France was capable of respecting promises to the European Union to reduce budget overspending.

PARIS, Jan 7 (AFP) - French President Jacques Chirac insisted on Friday that France was capable of respecting promises to the European Union to reduce budget overspending.

Chirac, in a traditional ceremony of New Year good wishes to the press, said of the deficit problem: "We are in a position to respect our European commitments."

He said that the French government headed by Prime Minister Jean-Pierre Raffarin "has taken the necessary decisions to ensure that growth picks up and has financed our national priorities while stabilising state spending."

He added: "We did the right thing in resisting pressure from those who recommended an excessively restrictive budget policy when we were rather at the bottom of the wave because growth was inadequate."

France has narrowly escaped tough procedures by the European Commission for breaching a key eurozone rule that a country's public deficit must not exceed 3.0 percent of output, but remains under strong pressure to deal with the underlying causes of structural deficits.

 

© AFP

Subject: French News

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