France has promised to accelerate efforts to revive its economy, taking advantage of a window of opportunity provided by the European Central Bank’s massive stimulus program.
ECB President Mario Draghi unveiled a program of quantitative easing worth at least $1.3 trillion on Thursday, hoping to prevent the eurozone getting stuck in a spiral of deflation and stagnation.
But he said the stimulus would only succeed if EU countries made their economies more competitive and efficient. Experts say France and Italy have the most work to do.
“The decision taken by the ECB compels us to be more daring, to remove brakes on growth and job creation,” French President Francois Hollande said at the World Economic Forum in Davos.
Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi has already made a start on reforming his economy.
Hollande said his government was trying to reduce burdens on business and make the labor market more flexible, to “bring our economy into line with reality.”
The reality of the eurozone’s second biggest economy right now makes for grim reading. French unemployment is above 10%, inflation is uncomfortably low and the economy is stagnating.
Hollande said his government would also improve the tax system to encourage companies, entrepreneurs and workers to come to France.
“We’re investing in bringing investment to France,” he said.