Socialist Royal sees problems with 35-hour workweek

3rd April 2007, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, April 3, 2007 (AFP) - French Socialist presidential candidate Segolene Royal has admitted that France's 35-hour working week has caused problems in some sectors of the economy that need to be addressed.

PARIS, April 3, 2007 (AFP) - French Socialist presidential candidate Segolene Royal has admitted that France's 35-hour working week has caused problems in some sectors of the economy that need to be addressed.

"The 35-hour workweek was not a mistake," Royal said in an interview with weekly magazine L'Express, to be published later this week.

But "for a very long time we did not dare say that the 35-hour workweek had not been well implemented everywhere," she said.

"To recognize that it needs to be assessed and that it has created more problems in some sectors than solutions is a way of giving ourselves room to act," she said.

The former Socialist government of Lionel Jospin adopted legislation in 2000 which cut the number of hours worked during the week from 39 to 35 as part of a plan to reduce unemployment, back then hovering in the double digits.

It has been criticised for causing havoc in hospitals and France's business lobby group, the MEDEF, maintains the shorter workweek has slowed down productivity growth.

Royal said she would "remain loyal to principles but open to discussion, even compromise, when it comes to the application" of the 35-hour workweek.

Copyright AFP

Subject: French news

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