With spending up to 24 billion euros, the “nanny” state does not lose weight

The draft Treasury Law for 2023, presented this morning, foresees an increase of 24,000 million euros in state spending and a public deficit that stagnates at around 5% of GDP.

Promise, swear, it’s over. The moment is now in “how much it costs”, assured Gabriel Attal, Delegate Minister of Public Accounts, during the presentation of the , this September 26. But, behind the elements of language, the numbers are stubborn. State spending will increase by 24,000 million euros compared to the 2022 budget. Inflated by the measures taken against the rise in energy prices, the Ecology budget has skyrocketed by 28.6%. That of Work jumped fully by 42% due in particular to a subsidy of two billion to the training organization France Competence. As for the sovereign ministries, they show increases of 7 to 8%. Under these conditions, it is not surprising that the public deficit is stagnating at around 5% of GDP. One of the highest amounts in the euro zone. This figure symbolizes the recurrent inability of governments to control the expenses of this “nanny” state, which grows on economic crises.

Temporary measures that last

However, the young liberal candidate Emmanuel Macron had been elected with the promise of reducing his weight in the economy. In 2017, it promised to reduce the level of public spending by three points, which reached 56.5% of GDP. In fact, its level decreased for the first time by 1.1 points in 2018-2019. Under the leadership of Prime Minister Edouard Philippe, the government has cut housing aid and unemployment insurance. But the crisis of the “yellow vests” quickly put an end to this policy. The government has even increased the activity bonus, the number of beneficiaries of which has increased by almost 40%! The State now supports part of the salaries of 4.3 million households, at a cost of ten billion.

The Covid crisis has accentuated this turnaround. The “whatever it costs” once again increased the weight of spending by 3.8 points in 2020-2021, with 157,000 million allocated to emergency and recovery measures. And as always, the state had trouble pulling the plug on certain measures. Therefore, the […]

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