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Emmanuel Macron promises “an act II” on employment “next spring”

“If France had the employment rate of Germany, we would no longer have a budget deficit problem.

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Emmanuel Macron promises “an act II” on employment “next spring”

“If France had the employment rate of Germany, we would no longer have a budget deficit problem.” During his press conference, Emmanuel Macron recalled the importance of continuing to improve the situation on the employment front. To do this, the Head of State promised “Act II” on the subject from “next spring”. A new stage after that launched when he came to power in 2017. The executive wants to put more pressure on the unemployed. “Be more severe when job offers are refused and better support job seekers.”

Strong signs which show that the President of the Republic has not abandoned his dream of achieving full employment by the end of his five-year term. For the Head of State, it is no longer a question of fulfilling a campaign promise but of leaving a trace of his visit to the Élysée. He wants to be the one who puts an end to the mass unemployment that France has not been able to get rid of since the 1970s. Emmanuel Macron drew this ambition from the 1.3 million jobs created in France in four years. . A historic surge like the country had never experienced and which caused the unemployment rate to fall from 9.1% at the end of 2018 to 7.1% at the start of 2023. That is to say, half the way to full-time. employment, the theoretical threshold of which is set at 5%.

But since then, nothing has gone as planned. Having had no effect on the morale of business leaders for a long time, the unstable geopolitical context has come to impact this beautiful mechanism. From the second quarter of 2023, hiring fell and social plans multiplied. Gradually, the share of unemployed people rose to reach 7.4% during the last months of the year. Worse, all economists expect this trend to continue. Only the duration and scale are debated. Among the most optimistic, INSEE expects a peak of 7.6% in the first half of 2024 before a decline. For the OFCE on the contrary, the deterioration should continue over the next twelve months and reach 8% unemployment.

However, there are reasons to hope for improvement in the near future. Officially created on January 1, the new employment operator France Travail should gradually gain momentum over the course of the year. Strengthened support for RSA recipients who are now automatically monitored by agents, greater incentive for companies to hire... the body has tools to boost job creation.

A year after being voted through with pain, the increase in the retirement age to 64 will also begin to come into effect. Enough to allow a surge in the employment rate of seniors. A subject on which France remains far behind compared to its European neighbors.

Finally, whether or not the President of the Republic reaches the 5% threshold in 2027 ultimately remains quite anecdotal. Every step towards full employment is worth taking. This improves the country's public finances, allows businesses to develop and employees to have more opportunities.

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