French PM sees 2.0-2.25 percent growth this year
Prime Minister Francois Fillon said that France could show growth of between 2.0 and 2.25 percent this year
PARIS, January 15, 2008 - Prime Minister Francois Fillon said Tuesday
that France could show growth of between 2.0 and 2.25 percent this year, a far
more robust pace than foreseen by private economists.
"Our objective of growth between 2.0 and 2.25 percent is attainable,"
Fillon said in remarks to the press.
While Fillon spoke of a range of growth, the government prepared its 2008
budget assuming a pace of 2.25 percent.
In recent days, two prominent private economists, reacting to a downturn in
industrial output and a widening in the trade deficit, have predicted French
growth of under 2.0 percent in 2008.
Marc Toutai of Global Equities said expansion in France this year would
likelky be held to 1.6 percent, "one of the worst performances in the world,"
while Alexander Law of the market research unit Xerfi predicted 1.4 percent.
But Fillon insisted Tuesday that "our growth is putting up a stronger
resistance than had been expected to headwinds in the international economy."
He said a downward revision in the forecast, reflecting a meltdown in the
US housing market and a global credit squeeze, "was not necessary for the