France has been given a two-year budget deficit extension by European Union (EU) finance ministers.
The country needs to bring its budget deficit below three per cent of GDP as part of the agreement laid out by the EU. It is France's third extension since 2009 and will need a lot of work to reduce the deficit from its current position of 4.1 per cent of GDP. France has been struggling with a high unemployment rate and this latest extension will provide more time to resolve the issue.
A statement from EU finance ministers read: "The Council called on France to fully implement measures already adopted for 2015. It called for an additional fiscal effort by the end of April 2015, involving additional structural measures equivalent to 0.2 per cent of GDP
"The Council found that extending the deadline for correcting the deficit was justified by the fiscal effort made by France since 2013, and by the current weak economic conditions and other factors."
France has previously outlined a number of strategies to tackle its deficit problem. In October 2014, the country's finance minister Michel Sapin outlined a plan to reduce the budget deficit by €3.6-3.7 billion (£2.84 billion) in the next year. However, the latest announcement from the EU highlights that France has failed to meet this target.
Mr Sapin also unveiled plans to reduce France's budget deficit to below three per cent of GDP by 2017, two years later than the original promise of 2015. The EU has now laid out new targets for France to meet.
The Council said that the country must reduce its deficit to 4.0 per cent of GDP for 2015, then to 3.4 per cent for 2016 and finally 2.8 per cent for 2017.
GAIN Capital UK Limited (trading as “City Index”) is an execution-only service provider. This material, whether or not it states any opinions, is for general information purposes only and it does not take into account your personal circumstances or objectives. This material has been prepared using the thoughts and opinions of the author and these may change. However, City Index does not plan to provide further updates to any material once published and it is not under any obligation to keep this material up to date. This material is short term in nature and may only relate to facts and circumstances existing at a specific time or day. Nothing in this material is (or should be considered to be) financial, investment, legal, tax or other advice and no reliance should be placed on it.
No opinion given in this material constitutes a recommendation by City Index or the author that any particular investment, security, transaction or investment strategy is suitable for any specific person. The material has not been prepared in accordance with legal requirements designed to promote the independence of investment research. Although City Index is not specifically prevented from dealing before providing this material, City Index does not seek to take advantage of the material prior to its dissemination. This material is not intended for distribution to, or use by, any person in any country or jurisdiction where such distribution or use would be contrary to local law or regulation.