the CRDS, the provisional party to stay

A few years after its creation by the left, the CSG gave ideas to the right. In 1996, in search of a new resource to finance the deficits accumulated by Social Security, Alain Juppé thus took inspiration from the CSG to create the contribution for the reimbursement of the social debt (CRDS).

→ ANALYSIS. Taxation: the CSG, a tax full of resources

A 0.5% levy, also based on all income, and intended to clear the debts transferred to the brand new Social Debt Redemption Fund (Cades), i.e. 250 billion francs (approximately 38 billion euros).

Unlike the CSG, the CRDS is born with a limited lifespan. The debt of Cades “Will be reimbursed over thirteen years”, promises Alain Juppé. The CRDS is therefore destined to be extinguished in 2009. The reality will be quite different. Over the years, Cades will indeed inherit a mountain of additional debt, requiring new revenue, but above all to continually extend the CRDS.

Even before the coronavirus crisis, Cades had thus recovered a total of 260 billion euros in debt! After having repaid a little less than 190 billion euros since its creation, it therefore still had a little more than 70 billion euros to finance. Under these conditions, the CRDS was scheduled to be extinguished from 2024.

The coronavirus crisis changed everything

But the crisis changed everything. The government has in fact decided to transfer a new pile of debt to Cades. Between past debt and the new deficits created by the Covid-19, its burden increases by 136 billion euros.

To deal with this, the CRDS has therefore been extended for the umpteenth time. Its horizon now extends until … 2034. If this new deadline were to be respected – and few are those who really believe in it -, logic would therefore want this levy to be extinguished in fifteen years. This would deprive the State of approximately 8 billion euros each year, returned to households.

This scenario is not the most likely. Because this manna arouses other desires, nourishes other projects. The unions and part of the left have never concealed that they would like to recover these sums to rebalance the pension system. Others instead see the CRDS being used to finance the growing cost of addiction.

Under its current name or under a new name, the CRDS therefore seems set to last. It could even challenge the famous car sticker for the most resistant provisional tax title. Established in 1956 “On a temporary basis”, the latter had survived nearly half a century, until its abolition in 2000.

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