A large gathering of some 200 elected officials, parliamentarians and directors of administrations, announcements covering all public policies and a Prime Minister, Elisabeth Borne, reduced to a concluding speech of barely more than a quarter of an hour: at a time when the corridors of the ministries are buzzing with rumors of reshuffle, it is a particularly proactive Bruno Le Maire who chaired, Monday, June 19, the “izes of public finances. »
First scheduled for February, then April, the event occupied the morning, on the seventh floor of Bercy, around an unequivocal subtitle: “debt France”. Public debt has reached 111.6% of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) after three years of health and energy crisis, and the executive has felt the wind of the cannonball ping very close to the degradation by the rating agency Standard & Poor’s, at the beginning of June.
In this context, the message of the Minister of Economy and Finance wanted to be clear. “We are coming out of exceptional times. We need to get back to normal when it comes to public spending”insisted the Mayor, arguing the need to ” respect[er] our commitments to our constituents”. But also for the sake of “credibility with our European partners. »
The ex-elected member of the Les Républicains party, however, did not hesitate to expand his remarks: “Behind the question of public finances (…) a more fundamental question arises: who do we want to be as a nation? (…) Do we want to be a nation of redistribution or a nation of production? » In private, the who has been trying in vain for two years to definitively whistle the end of “whatever the cost” regret that“we don’t hit [s]a porte que to ask for money and redistribution”. And if he refutes any appeal from the foot to the right, his announcements were nevertheless intended, on Monday, to be marked with the seal of budgetary responsibility.
A message of firmness
At a time when his colleague, the Minister Delegate for Public Accounts, Gabriel Attal, is completing the traditional budget arbitration meetings with each ministry with a view to the construction of the 2024 finance bill (PLF), presented in September, Bruno The mayor promised “at least 10 billion in savings” – And more likely 12 billion – next year. Part of these sums will come from “spending reviews” carried out since the end of 2022 by its administrations, and which will be renewed each year, with the aim of releasing, by 2027, an envelope of a similar amount (10 billion euros).
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