French gov't unveils debt plan to enhance development

20:38, November 20, 2009      

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The French government on Thursday unveiled a 35-billion-euro (52 billion U.S. dollars) national debt policy aimed at enhancing France's long-term development.

A commission led by former prime ministers Alain Juppe and Michel Rocard on Thursday submitted a report to President Nicolas Sarkozy, outlining priorities of the financing campaign.

According to the report, 13 billion euros (19 billion dollars) will come from bailout money repaid by French banks, while the rest will be raised in the financial markets through the issuance of government bonds.

The biggest beneficiaries of the financing policy will be French universities with 16 billion euros (23.8 billion dollars) going for facilities, faculties and research projects.

The report said 4.5 billion euros (6.7 billion dollars) would be used to improve city environments. Another 4 billion euros (6 billion dollars) would be used to promote the digital economy.

Sarkozy announced the so-called "Big Loan" program in June, aiming to fund French industry and infrastructure. A recent poll, however, showed that 56 percent of France's citizens consider the plan "useless."

Once policies are determined, Juppe said, the government will start to issue the public debt at the beginning of next year by passing an amendment to financial law.

Source: Xinhua
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