The French economy threatens to stagnate, at least
in the first half of 2013, the French national statistics institute
Insee announced Friday.
The second-largest national economy in the EU is expected to grow only 0.1 per cent in each of the first two quarters, compared to the previous year.
The economy must then grow 1 per cent in the second half of the year in order to meet the government's total growth target of 0.8 per cent.
If this scenario plays out it will be possible for France to meet the EU national deficit target of no more than 3 per cent.
EU Economy Commissioner Olli Rehn told the "Le Monde" newspaper on Friday that the 3 per cent target is a benchmark.
"The efforts of structural budget consolidation, which France began with remarkable intensity, must also be considered" Rehn added.
Rehn also spoke of the need for reforms in the French job market, saying that "France is not yet out of troubled waters."
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