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France

Contradicting statements from president, PM over jobless figures

©

Text by FRANCE 24 (with wires)

Latest update : 2010-02-26

French Prime Minister François Fillon said on Thursday that unemployment in France will rise until the middle of 2010, apparently contradicting President Nicolas Sarkozy's earlier assurances that the jobless rate would lessen "in the coming weeks".

Unemployment in France is likely to continue to rise at least until the middle of 2010, Prime Minister Francois Fillon said on Thursday.

"The numbers are very bad in most other European countries and we will exit the recession gradually, which means we will see unemployment rise until the middle of 2010 at least," Fillon said during a visit to a factory in Ymare, in northern France.

But Fillon’s statement appears to contradict President Nicolas Sarkozy’s assurances on French television in January that “the French [would] witness a decrease in unemployment in the coming weeks and months.”

Fillon explained on Thursday: “What the president meant, and what we are seeing, is that the rise in unemployment is slower than it was in the heart of the crisis, and will gradually stabilize.”

The number of jobless in France rose by 19,500, or 0.7 percent, in January, to stand at 2.66 million, with a particular rise in the long-term unemployed, according to figures published late on Wednesday.

 

 

 

Date created : 2010-02-26

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