Sarkozy cracks down on ministers' perks
French President Nicolas Sarkozy Monday moved to slash perks for members of the government, after a series of rows about ministers' spending at a time when budget cuts are hitting the public.
Sarkozy ordered Prime Minister Francois Fillon in a letter to "vigorously reduce" perks by cracking down on entertaining and the use of planes, cars and lodging by ministers and other officials.
"At a time when our compatriots are hit by the crisis, the state must more than ever set an example," Sarkozy wrote.
"The search for savings in the administration is necessary to restore our public finances."
Fillon's government has vowed to slash public spending by at least 100 billion euros (124 billion dollars) over three years.
Mass street protests took place last week against the government's plans to raise the retirement age from 60 to 62, part of efforts to bring down France's soaring public deficit.
© 2010 AFP