Le Figaro takes stock of the main indicators presented in the finance bill for next year.
Great start for the traditional end-of-year budget sequence. This Monday, the government unveiled its finance bill (PLF) for 2023, described as facing “Protect the French and move towards full employment». Ce «financial package“, according to the established expression, includes a number of measures, ranging from the extension of the energy shield next year to the increase in expenditure in several sovereign ministries, through provisions aimed at restoring the public accounts, undermined by two years of Covid and the war in Ukraine. Le Figaro comes back to the main figures of this budget.
Growth: 1% next year, a disputed figure
As indicated by Bruno Le Maire in mid-September, the executive expects growth of 1% next year. The activity “would resist“, despite an increasingly tense international context, want to believe the services of the ministry. The government remains more optimistic than other experts, including the Banque de France, which does not rule out a recession, admittedly “limited and temporary“, in 2023. On Monday, the OECD also warned of a more marked slowdown than expected in activity, expecting growth of only 0.6% next year for France.
Inflation: better in 2023
Those who hoped that inflation would quickly return to normal are at their expense. Next year, Bercy estimates that prices should continue to rise, around 4.2%. A level certainly high, but which remains lower than the average expected this year, around 5.3%. Prices should start to come back around the middle of the year, “to reach a level close to 3% at the end of 2023“. A forecast, again, optimistic: in September, the Banque de France considered, for its part, that inflation could vary between 4.2% and 6.9%, on average annually.
Purchasing power: recovery expected in 2023
As a logical consequence of the slowdown in inflation expected next year, households should find some fresh air. According to Bercy, massive and costly aid, such as the energy shield, has already made it possible to protect purchasing power this year. And, in 2023, purchasing power should increase by 0.9%, driven in particular by wage increases and the thawing of the civil service index point. Either a rate still much lower than the 1.9% observed in 2021, but “higher than that of the activity“, nuance the ministry.
Public accounts: no improvement in sight in 2023
Despite repeated alerts from the Court of Auditors, the public accounts will remain in the red in 2023. The deficit should remain at 5%, the same level as this year, and it should not decrease before 2024. The return below the 3 % is no longer expected before 2027. For its part, the public debt will also stabilize, and should remain around 111% for several years. It would increase temporarily in 2024 and 2025, before returning to 110.9% in 2027, still according to Bercy.
Not enough to satisfy the High Council of Public Finances, which criticized, on Monday, a trajectory “unambitious“until 2027:”France, which is in the group of the most indebted countries in the euro zone and has a high tax rate, nevertheless needs a solid expenditure control program“, added the organization which evaluates the budget each year.
Massive spending and revenue
Despite the end of theno matter what“, State expenditure will remain massive in 2023. According to Bercy, that of the general budget will thus reach 500.2 billion euros, a figure nevertheless down from the 513.4 billion euros forecast in the revised version. of the 2022 budget. In parallel, total revenue would reach 345.1 billion euros. The deficit would therefore reach 158.5 billion euros, “in improvementcompared to this year, by 14.1 billion euros.
On the revenue side, the executive expects in particular a significant drop in VAT revenue, a decline in receipts due to corporation tax and a stabilization of income tax.
Employment: nearly 11,000 net creations for the State
Is the time for job cuts in the public service over? The 2023 budget provides for the creation of 10,764 full-time equivalents (FTE) “within the State and its operators», in order to respect the commitments made by the President of the Republic. Thus, the Ministry of the Interior gains 3069 ETP, Justice 2253 ETP, the Armed Forces 1547 ETP. Conversely, Bercy must deal with deletions.
Energy: 45 billion for “protect households»
This is one of the major expenditure items of the PLF: next year, the government will put some 45 billion euros to finance its tariff shield. The net cost, meanwhile, is still some 16 billion euros. Huge, these sums could have been even greater, the shield having been revised downwards, via a “contained increase in electricity and gas prices at +15%», beginning of 2023.
Mission Credits: Many Winners, Some Losers
In 2023, many missions are seeing their budget increase, compared to the initial 2022 budget. This is the case for Ecology, Labour, Health, School Education and even Defence. Among the strong increases are the “State financial commitmentswhich include the debt burden. With the rise in interest rates, this jumped from 38.66 billion, in LFI 2022, to 50.83 billion euros in the PLF 2023.
Some missions are seeing their budget decrease. This is particularly the case for the Economy, Veterans Affairs, or even missions linked to the recovery plan or France 2030. In the second case, “mission appropriations will shrink due to declining recipient demographics“, specifies the executive.
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