BRUSSELS, June 2 France needs to stick to its
planned reforms in order to bring down its budget deficit to
below 3 percent of economic output in 2015, European Commission
President Jose Manuel Barroso said on Monday.
"The French authorities, before the European elections,
announced an important package of structural measures," Barroso
told a news conference.
"We think that it is still possible, in particular as
regards the structural objectives, for France to meet its
commitments if indeed the measures are actually applied," he
"It's true that on the basis of a constant policy without
any change, these objectives could be at risk," he said. "But
the French authorities ... still have time to introduce the
At the start of May, the Commission warned that France would
miss its 2015 target unless it makes rapid policy adjustments.
France was meant to have cut its deficit to 3 percent of
gross domestic product by 2013 but the EU extended the deadline
by two years.
Paris then delivered a 4.3 percent deficit in 2013 instead
of 4.1 percent and is set to miss this year's target too. At the
same time, other euro zone countries in far more difficult
economic circumstances have managed to meet their obligations.
(Reporting by Jan Strupczewski and John O'Donnell)