fFrance wants to increase spending on the environment and climate protection in the coming year. The budget of the Ministry for Ecology and Energy Transformation is to increase by 15 percent to almost 60 billion euros. That goes from the draft budget presented by the French government in the cabinet on Monday.
France is therefore assuming growth of one percent and wants to take on 270 billion euros in debt. “It is a credible and resolute prognosis,” said Minister of Economy Bruno Le Maire. The French central bank and the OECD had previously assumed lower growth for France.
The 2023 budget stipulates the already announced price brake for gas and electricity. Energy prices are therefore expected to rise by a maximum of 15 percent in the coming year. In the current year, the price increase is limited to four percent. The climate protection campaign Réseau Action Climat criticized the fact that all sections of the population benefited from the financial support, including the wealthier ones. The cost of the price cap is estimated at 45 billion euros.
New positions in the public service
The environmental budget includes, among other things, 2.5 billion euros for the insulation of buildings and 1.3 billion euros to accelerate the switch to electric cars. France also wants to abolish export guarantees for the export of fossil fuels as early as next year. Previously, France had wanted to take its time until 2025 and for gas even until 2035, but was heavily criticized.
The budget also envisages creating almost 11,000 new public sector jobs, including security guards, caregivers for schoolchildren with disabilities and cybersecurity experts. 945 million are planned to top up teacher salaries, which are low by EU standards.
The budget for immigration is to be increased by six percent. Among other things, this should create 5,900 accommodations for refugees and asylum seekers. The budget has yet to be approved by the National Assembly. President Emmanuel Macron’s electoral alliance lost its absolute majority in the most recent elections in June.
An earlier version of the article talked about cuts in spending on climate and environmental protection. That’s wrong. In fact, the government in Paris wants to increase spending by 15 percent.