A French austerity programme that threatens all of Europe's economies


Last month, French President François Hollande announced a programme to cut public spending by a further 50 billion euros by 2017, on top of 14 billion euros already set to be saved during 2014. Mediapart economy and finance specialist Martine Orange analyses the potentially disastrous effects that such drastic and unprecedented austerity measures may entail for both France and the rest of Europe at a time when economies across the continent are threatened by deflation.

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French finance minister Pierre Moscovici, speaking on radio station France Inter on Sunday, hailed his government’s “courageous” policies, announcing that “never has a government engaged upon such reductions in public spending”.  In that he was right, for his ambition to save 50 billion euros in public spending over the next three years raised the curtain on an austerity programme that is unprecedented in France since World War II.