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France to lower growth target after auditors' report

Reuters/Vincent Kessler

France’s Socialist government is set to lower its growth forecasts after state auditors warned that growth targets for 2013 are unlikely to be met.

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In its annual report released on Tuesday the Cour des Comptes said the government had to make more effort to cut expenditure.

It said public debt would grow to 90 per cent of GDP and slow growth would keep France from reaching its three per cent deficit target.

President François Hollande said that an adjustment to the target of 0.8 per cent growth target for 2013 could come soon.

“There’s no point in setting targets if they cannot be reached,” he declared. “However, we must do our best to meet the strict budget demands we have taken on for this year. And we must also have the will to preserve employment and promote business activity.”

Hollande has been treading a delicate line between balancing the budget and trying to stimulate growth, without success on either count so far, according to the Cour des Comptes.

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