The Cour des comptes is publishing its annual report on the situation and outlook of public finances in France, including the audit on public finances asked for by the prime minister. Despite the efforts undertaken, the situation of France’s public finances is far from being in order. The slow pace of the
reduction of the public deficit from 2012 to 2016 means that France now trails its European partners.
The financial trajectory for 2017 to 2020 comprises numerous construction biases that undermine its sincerity and it appears unable to be respected. In the absence of strong measures to cut expenditures, the public deficit in 2017 will exceed the objective by 0.4% of GDP to reach 3.2% of GDP. In 2018 and beyond, an unprecedented savings effort will need to be made to respect the trajectory of the Stability Programme.
The Cour des comptes recommends a revision of public finance planning and coordination methods. It has also identified actions that could be taken to control the trend in our public expenditure on a lasting basis.