French economy to hit growth forecast: minister

22nd June 2006, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, June 22, 2006 (AFP) - French Finance Minister Thierry Breton told lawmakers Thursday that inflation was well contained and that economic growth had settled into a range of 2-2.5 percent.

PARIS, June 22, 2006 (AFP) - French Finance Minister Thierry Breton told lawmakers Thursday that inflation was well contained and that economic growth had settled into a range of 2-2.5 percent.

The government had already forecast gross domestic product would grow by 2-2.5 percent in both 2006 and 2007, but the national statistics office Insee estimated early Thursday that GDP would increase by just 2.0 percent this year.

Breton also told parliament the government stood by its pledge to reduce public debt from 66.6 percent of output to "at least 64.6 percent of GDP by the end of the year".

Under terms of the EU Stability and Growth Pact, France is bound to maintain its debt at no more than 60 percent of GDP.

Government spending, Breton said, would increase next year by one percent less than inflation, which he said "remained very well contained" at around 2.0 percent currently on a 12-month basis.

Growth was "now on a trend of 2-2.5 percent," he added while opening a debate on budgetary priorities for 2007.

Copyright AFP

Subject: French news

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