Euro Crisis

France's Statist Policies Slammed in German Government Memo

Calls the country "Europe's biggest problem child" for its regulations and welfare state


The German daily Handelsblatt has obtained an internal memo compiled for German Vice Chancellor and economics minister Philipp Rösler, who leads the Free Democratic Party, a centre-right party in Germany's ruling coalition.

"French industry is increasingly losing its competitiveness. Businesses continue to move overseas, and the profitability of businesses is low," the memo wrote.

The memo also criticised France's increasing labour costs and dwindling investment in research and development, noting that France has the "second-shortest working year" in the European Union, and that its tax load is "the highest within the Eurozone".

But, Handelsblatt wrote, the heaviest criticism was found in an analysis entitled: "France – Europe's biggest problem child", which criticised France's highly-regulated labour market and social welfare system.