France budget gap at 89.7 bn euros

Paris, Oct 9 (IANS) At the end of August, France narrowed its budget gap by 4.4 billion euros ($4.98 billion) to 89.7 billion euros compared to last year’s performance on squeezed public expenditure, the Budget Ministry said on Friday.

Spending of Europe’s main powerhouse stood at 249.9 billion euros in August, down from 253.9 billion euros from the same month in 2014 and that was in line with government’s financial saving plan this year to help meet financial targets, Xinhua news agency reported.

As to revenue, the ruling Socialists, already struggling to garner enough billions of euros to kick-start economic activity, saw 1.7 percent rise in the country’s receipts to 189.2 billion euros over the period, the ministry said.

French government set the deficit at 3.8 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) this year before falling to 3.3 percent in 2016. It pledged to lower the figure below the EU mandated threshold of three percent in 2017.

Working hard to respect the EU safety line, the ruling Socialists were working to save 25 billion euros in 2015 and further 50 billion euros by the end of mandate by squeezing public spending and proposing a reform pact aimed at spurring investment and breathing life into the local sluggish job market.

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