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Nov 19, 2012

French right in chaos over contested leadership vote

PARIS (Reuters) – The race to lead France’s conservative opposition descended into chaos on Monday, with both contenders alleging fraud in a vote that highlighted a deep split between rightists and centrists since the party lost power in May.

The bickering wrecked a contest designed to give the right a fresh start after it lost its 17-year hold on the presidency in May, and prompted political commentators to warn that the Union for a Popular Movement could collapse.

Nov 17, 2012

Bruised French conservatives to pick new leader

PARIS (Reuters) – France’s conservatives will elect a new leader on Sunday who will determine whether the party ousted in May from a 17-year presidential reign will hold to the centre or move to the right in a quest to regain power in 2017.

Moderate ex-prime minister Francois Fillon, who regularly tops political popularity polls, is tipped to narrowly beat Jean-Francois Cope, a disciple of ex-president Nicolas Sarkozy and his hard stance on issues including immigration.

Nov 7, 2012

EU sees France missing 2013 deficit target

Nov 7 (Reuters) – France stands to miss a goal of trimming
its public deficit to the EU’s target ceiling next year as tax
hikes made in the name of fiscal rigour undermine growth, the
European Commission said on Wednesday.

The EU’s executive arm saw growth in the euro zone’s
second-largest economy at just 0.4 percent next year – half the
0.8 percent assumed in the 2013 budget and held back largely by
tax rises that will hurt consumer spending.

Nov 6, 2012

France eases labor costs via tax credits, VAT hike

PARIS (Reuters) – France is to grant 20 billion euros in annual tax credits to companies as a way of lowering labor costs, in a tougher-than-expected response to calls from business heads to reverse decades of industrial decline.

Responding to a call by industrialist Louis Gallois to slash labor charges companies say keep them at a competitive disadvantage, Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault said tax credits would be funded by higher sales tax rates and spending cuts.

Nov 6, 2012

France hikes VAT, cuts spending, to bolster industry

PARIS (Reuters) – France will ease payroll taxes by 20 billion euros over three years, funding that with spending cuts and sales tax rises, in a tougher-than-expected response to business leaders’ demands to reverse decades of industrial decline.

The Socialist government, under pressure to bring down high labor costs but wary of shifting too much of the tax burden onto households, will offer companies tax credits from next year and raise consumer taxes from 2014.

Nov 5, 2012

France readies response to shock therapy industry call

PARIS (Reuters) – French industrialist Louis Gallois called for a patriotic effort to reverse declining competitiveness through shock therapy as he handed in a review on Monday which the Socialist government commissioned and is now under pressure to heed.

Gallois prescribed slashing 30 billion euros ($38 billion) off payroll taxes and compensating with spending cuts and higher consumer taxes to try and stem a long industrial decline that has eaten away at exports and bled factory jobs.

Nov 5, 2012

France readies response to “shock” industry review

PARIS (Reuters) – French industrialist Louis Gallois called for a patriotic effort to reverse declining competitiveness via shock therapy as he handed in a review on Monday which the Socialist government commissioned and is now under pressure to heed.

Gallois is prescribing slashing 30 billion euros ($38.54 billion) off payroll taxes and loosening labor laws to reverse a long decline in industrial competitiveness that has eaten away at exports and bled factory jobs.

Nov 5, 2012

Hollande likely to shrug off “shock therapy” review

PARIS (Reuters) – The French government is expected to play down a review on Monday that will prescribe taking an axe to payroll taxes and softening labor laws to reverse a long slide in competitiveness that has eaten away at exports and bled factory jobs.

Any expectations that the widely-leaked government-commissioned report by industrialist Louis Gallois would bring big reforms have been snuffed out in advance by the Socialist government which has ruled out “shock therapy” proposals.

Oct 25, 2012

France seeks to set Algerian remembrance date

PARIS (Reuters) – France will try again on Thursday to fix an annual day of remembrance for those who died in the 1954-62 Algerian war and independence struggles in Morocco and Tunisia that ended more than a century of French colonial rule.

The Senate is to vote on the bill, which has gathered dust for 10 years, to set the memorial date. This could be another step towards warmer relations with Algiers as Paris seeks its backing for an African-led military intervention against Islamist militants in northern Mali.

Oct 18, 2012

Entrepreneurs face obstacle course in France

PARIS (Reuters) – It took some nerve for 10 engineers in a Paris basement to take on electronics giant Fujitsu for a $20 million contract to supply European planemaker Airbus with a new kind of data tag for its aircraft parts.

But Frenchman Bruno Lo-Re, who was 38 at the time, was sure his team had a headstart against the Tokyo-based company of 170,000 employees: he had already persuaded the French airforce to let him try them out on its fighter jets.

    • About Catherine

      "Catherine is chief correspondent for Reuters France, in charge of political and macroeconomic news, with a focus for 2011 on the G20 presidency, euro zone debt crisis and 2012 election campaign. She has reported from 16 countries for Reuters -- most recently in Latin America as a senior correspondent in Mexico City -- on stories ranging from the Haiti earthquake to the Beijing Olympic Games."
      Languages:
      English, French, Spanish
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