Soaring oil prices no threat to French economy: Industry Minister

19th August 2004, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, Aug 19 (AFP) - Industry Minister Patrick Devedjian said Thursday that the French economy was currently growing at an annualised rate of three percent and that rising oil prices did not yet pose a threat to growth.

PARIS, Aug 19 (AFP) - Industry Minister Patrick Devedjian said Thursday that the French economy was currently growing at an annualised rate of three percent and that rising oil prices did not yet pose a threat to growth.

"The three motors of economic growth have taken off: household spending is active, corporate investment as business leaders are optimistic, and exports are beginning to take off," Devedjian said in an interview with Europe 1 radio.

Asked about soaring oil prices, which have broken a series of records over the past weeks, and their impact on French industry, Devedjian said that "growth is not in danger today."

However, he said that if oil prices rose to USD 50 a barrel and stayed there, it could shave one percent off France's growth in gross domestic product this year.

French statistics office INSEE last month said it expected GDP growth to come in at 2.3 percent in 2004.

© AFP

Subject: French news

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