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1ST LEAD French National Assembly approves first Macron budget By Pol O Gradaigh, dpa

Europe
21.11.2017
By our dpa-correspondent and Europe Online    auf Facebook posten  Auf Twitter posten  
Paris (dpa) - The French National Assembly on Tuesday approved the first budget presented under President Emmanuel Macron by 356 votes to 175.

Deputies from Macron‘s centrist La Republique en Marche (The Republic on the Move, LREM) party, which holds 309 of the assembly‘s 577 seats, rose to their feet and applauded as assembly president Francois de Rugy announced result of the vote.

The budget plans for tax and spending cuts in line with the centrist president‘s campaign commitments before his election in May.

It will now go to the Senate, where the right and centre-right opposition holds a majority and is likely to seek to amend it.

Macron‘s government says measures such as eliminating a tax paid by renters by 2020 will increase the purchasing power of most workers.

France‘s wealth tax will be replaced by a tax on real estate assets only from 2018, a move Macron has said will favour productive investment of wealth.

The National Assembly already approved the budget‘s tax provisions last month and is now voting on the entire text.

Public expenditure, currently 56 per cent of gross domestic product, should fall by 3 percentage points over Macron‘s five-year term.

Left-wing opposition parties have attacked Macron as a "president for the rich," saying the wealthiest will do best out of the measures.

If the Senate amends the budget and conciliation efforts fail, the National Assembly can as a last resort overrule the upper house.

 

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