PARIS, April 10 The 75 percent tax rate that
French presidential frontrunner Francois Hollande wants to slap
on income over 1 million euros will be kept in place for many
years, in line with the broader debt reduction effort, a top
adviser to the Socialist candidate said on Tuesday.
In an interview with Reuters, Hollande adviser Michel Sapin
said the 75 percent rate was more a symbolic measure than a big
moneyspinner for the state but should stay in place for as long
as the rest of Hollande's national debt-reduction effort.
Slashing the public debt from some 89 percent of gross
domestic product to the desired level of 60 percent would take
"many years", said Sapin, an ex-finance minister who is in
charge of Hollande's election manifesto.
"So our endeavour is going to last a long time. This measure
(75 percent rate) will last as long as the exceptional (broader)
sacrifice France has to make," he said. Asked if this meant it
would be kept for several years, he said, "Yes, naturally."
Hollande, who is tipped in polls of voting intentions to
beat conservative incumbent Nicolas Sarkozy in a May 6 run-off,
announced the 75 percent tax rate plan in late February and has
since said it is a symbolic measure that would hit about 3,000
people and generate around 200-300 million euros a year.
Others in his Socialist Party have said the tax could be a
temporary measure, raising questions about how long it was
intended to stay in place.