The man charged with reviving France’s shrinking economy and attracting businesses to invest here is gaining a reputation for doing the opposite.
As the country’s first-ever minister for industrial renewal, Arnaud Montebourg has told the world’s largest steelmaker it is not welcome in France; exchanged angry letters with the head of an American tire company he was supposedly wooing; and scuttled Yahoo’s offer to buy the majority of a video-sharing website.
Montebourg, a 50-year-old lawyer from Burgundy, is the public face of President Francois Hollande’s plan to revitalize Europe’s second-largest economy, which is in recession and grappling with 11 percent unemployment. The plan is to make the French economy more competitive globally _ especially for manufacturers _ by making it easier to fire workers, offering a payroll tax credit and investing in small businesses.
Economists have praised the labor reforms as a step in the right direction. But mostly they say France’s economic plan is all wrong: It is too complicated; it favors a top-down approach to innovation; and it ignores some of the most serious problems plaguing France’s economy, such as high labor costs.
Chosen excerpts by Job Market Monitor
via Does France have right plan to revive its economy? – Timesonline.com: Europe.
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