The National Assembly begins Monday the last budget season of the five-year term, with a budget bill for 2022 heavy with post-crisis spending and investments but still incomplete, and which the oppositions denounce as misleading.
Two important components are missing: the investment plan promised by Emmanuel Macron to build France in 2030 and which he will unveil on Tuesday, and the “engagement income” for young people, still shrouded in uncertainties.
On this point, still in the process of arbitration, the government could revise its ambitions downwards and favor a “contract of engagement” refocused on 500,000 young people aged 16 to 25 (rather than 1 million mentioned at the start), further away from employment and studies.
“For lack of time” and “money”, this “could land on a simple extension of the youth guarantee”, estimates a government source, or an already existing support system, with an allowance of around 500 euros.
The government intends to complete the draft budget by amendments.
“I prefer that we delay on the commitment income, if we do not have the support solutions. As for the investment plan, it will not be 30 billion at once and there is a share of recycling of PIA4 “, the 4th future investment program launched in 2021, puts LREM deputy Cendra Motin into perspective.
This copy earned the executive remonstrances from the High Council of Public Finance, which was unable to give a “fully enlightened” opinion on this finance bill and the “plausibility” of the deficit forecast at 4.8% of the budget. GDP in 2022, for a still dizzying debt, expected at 114% of GDP.
And the opposition is having a blast.
“Your PLF is a golf course, I do not yet know if it is composed of eighteen or nine holes”, ironically the socialist Christine Pires Beaune, regretting the absence of an RSA for the 18 -24 years, claimed by the PS for a long time.
– “spending euphoria” –
“It is a budget of jokes and tricks. We did not budget in the order of five to six billion expenses, I have never seen that”, adds Charles de Courson (Freedom and Territories), who begins at age 69 his 29th fiscal year in the Assembly.
The government claims a budget “back to normal”, after the “whatever the cost” in the face of Covid-19. Bercy promises to devote part of the best expected revenue to deficit reduction thanks to dynamic growth this year (+ 6%, then + 4% in 2022 according to the government).
The announcements of Emmanuel Macron and Jean Castex have however multiplied in recent weeks, between plan for the independents, boost to MaPrimeRénov, Beauvau for security, plan for Marseille …
And the executive intends to keep its “commitments”, with the increase in resources allocated to sovereign missions – Interior, Justice, Armies – as well as to Education and Research.
“The growth is there, (…) powerful” and “it is the moment to invest, to prepare France for the economic success of the next 15 to 20 years”, assumes the Minister of the Economy Bruno Le Maire.
LR lashes out at “spending euphoria.” Valérie Pécresse, a right-wing presidential candidate, accuses the government of “cramming the coffers” before the election.
On the left, Eric Coquerel (LFI), on the other hand, finds that “this budget spends both insufficiently and badly,” pointing to tax cuts that “benefit the richest.” There is “no solidarity tax”, also laments the communist Jean-Paul Dufrègne.
The rapporteur Laurent Saint-Martin (LREM) calls for “fiscal stability”, in particular for companies. This budget should not contain significant fiscal changes, if not the continuation of movements initiated before the crisis.
Thus, the wealthiest 20% of households who still pay housing tax will see its amount further reduced, before it is completely abolished in 2023.
Monday, the National Assembly attacks the first part devoted to recipes, with some 2,000 amendments to the key, with a view to a solemn vote on October 19. Then will come the second part devoted to spending and the parliamentary shuttle with the Senate, in order to definitively adopt this last five-year budget before Christmas.