France set for deficit reform: minister

2nd February 2011, Comments 0 comments

France's government is set to launch a constitutional reform requiring the country to keep down its public deficit, the budget minister said on Wednesday.

"This is an overhaul of our basic law which will modify the constitution and fix a clear aim to achieve in balancing the budget," the minister, Francois Baroin, told reporters after a cabinet meeting.

He said the government would launch a bill "in the coming weeks". Under the planned reform, parliament would approve budgetary deadlines and the Constitutional Council, a top legal authority, would enforce them.

France has estimated its deficit at 7.7 percent of domestic product for 2010, one of the highest among European Union countries and far above the 3.0-percent EU limit.

French President Nicolas Sarkozy launched the constitutional deficit reform plan last year as part of Europe-wide efforts to stabilise the eurozone, shaken by a debt crisis. Germany has taken a similar measure.

© 2011 AFP

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