Published: 22 Feb 2013 12:48 GMT+01:00 | Print version
Updated: 22 Feb 2013 12:48 GMT+01:00
France's public deficit is set to be worse than expected in 2013 and 2014, veering up to 3.7 percent of output this year and 3.9 percent next year, the European Commission said on Friday.
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.
A man was arrested on Friday after causing a scare at the Cannes Film Festival, where he attacked a TV studio with a gun loaded with blanks and a dummy grenade, police and witnesses said. READ () »
French actor and newly-minted Russian citizen Gerard Depardieu on Saturday compared President Vladimir Putin to the late Pope John Paul II and said the ex-KGB agent is what Russia needs as a leader. READ () »
France became the 14th country to legalise same-sex marriage Saturday after President Francois Hollande signed the measure into law following months of bitter political debate. READ () »
Struggling French oyster farmers, whose haul has diminished in recent years, are set to receive some much needed help from their Swedish counterparts, by importing oyster spats from Sweden for the first time. READ () »
France's highest court the Constitutional Council cleared the divisive gay marriage bill on Friday, paving the way for same sex unions to become legal. Francois Hollande said he would sign the bill into law as soon as Saturday. READ () »
While many in the world of football raised a glass to David Beckham when he announced his retirement on Thursday, elements in the French media as well as PSG fans in Paris could not hide the fact they feel a little cheated by his minimal contribution on the pitch. READ () »
Thieves have stolen Chopard jewellery worth $1 million at Cannes Film Festival, French police reported on Friday. The jewellery was due to be loaned to film stars over the coming days. READ () »
Around 750 police have been stationed at schools across the French city of Strasbourg after an anonymous person, believed to be a teenager, posted a message online threatening to commit suicide and kill several pupils at a school on Friday. READ () »
Charges of manslaughter against Martine Aubry, a leading member of France's ruling Socialist Party, were dropped on Friday by a French court. The charges related to a probe into thousands of deaths caused by exposure to asbestos. READ () »
French companies have long had a reputation for relying heavily on unpaid interns. New figures released on Friday highlighting the staggering number of interns on the payroll at banking giant Societé General will only confirm this reputation. READ () »