Wednesday 20 September 2017

Hollande moves to cap salaries of senior bosses

Henry Samuel Paris

FRANCE's top private sector bosses could see their salaries capped under a bill being tabled by the Socialist government.

The measure came as President Francois Hollande seeks to woo back Left-wing supporters who are angry at his focus on the deficit and debt reduction and failure to stem rising unemployment.

Their disapproval has helped turn him into the most unpopular French president ever after 10 months in office.

France passed a decree last year limiting the annual pay of the heads of state-run firms to €450,000, following a scale whereby a state boss should not earn more than 20 times that of his lowest-paid worker.

More than eight in 10 French people back limiting private sector pay, a poll earlier this month found.

Speaking in parliament yesterday, Jean-Marc Ayrault, the prime minister, announced: "In a few weeks, I will propose a bill so that these same measures can be applied to large private businesses."

Najat Vallaud-Belkacem, the government spokesman, said that the law would be ready "before the summer".

She diluted Mr Ayrault's claims when asked whether it set a clear pay ceiling. "There will be a law but we cannot do in the private what we did in the public (sector), that's clear."

Not all ministers in the socialist government's fractious cabinet appeared happy with state intervention on private sector pay.

Pierre Moscovici, the finance minister, insisted that the government would only legislate "if necessary". He said employers' unions had drawn up a code of good practice and were "conscious" of the need for self-regulation.

Observers said that the timing of the announcement appeared to be a damage limitation exercise amid reports that France's Council of State is to bury Mr Hollande's pledge to implement a 75pc tax on millionaire earners.

The council will, according to 'Le Figaro' newspaper, conclude that any figure above 66.6pc of earnings per household would be confiscatory. (© Daily Telegraph, London)

Irish Independent

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