France's 2013 public debt worse than expected
Published: 22 Feb 2013 12:48 GMT+01:00
Updated: 22 Feb 2013 12:48 GMT+01:00
- French government in row over growth forecast (19 Feb 13)
- ECB demands France stick to deficit targets (15 Feb 13)
- 'Little chance' of France hitting growth forecast (12 Feb 13)
The figure for this year, when France was due to get back within the EU's ceiling of 3.0 percent of output, is worse than the 3.5 percent previously tipped, and leaves Socialist President Francois Hollande looking for special leeway from Brussels.
European Union Economy and Euro Commissioner Olli Rehn told a press conference that France could be given more time to meet its commitments, much as Spain and others have been over the three years of the debt crisis.
"If the expected negative economic headwinds bring significant, unfavourable consequences for public finances, the (EU's) Stability and Growth Pact allows for the deadline (for France) to be pushed back to 2014," he said.