Country report France - Work Package 1 Ex post evaluation of Cohesion Policy programmes 2007-2013, focusing on the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and the Cohesion Fund (CF)

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Available languages : English
Period : 2007-2013
Date : 07/10/2016

Over the 2007-2013 period, the French economy like others in the EU was hit by the global recession, but compared with many other Member States, especially Italy and Spain, it weathered the economic crisis relatively well maintaining employment and containing the increase in unemployment. Growth, however, was slower than the EU average over the 2011-2015 period. The budget deficit rose to 7% of GDP in 2009, but was then progressively reduced by fiscal consolidation measures to 3.5% in 2015. Nevertheless, government debt rose from 64% of GDP in 2007 to 96% in 2015.

The extent of regional disparities remained broadly unchanged over the period, though the crisis affected individual regions differently; with Ile de France experiencing an increase in GDP per head relative to the national average between 2007 and 2014 and Rhone-Alpes (the region with the second highest GDP per head) a reduction.

In total, support from the ERDF amounted to EUR 8 billion, or just under 0.1% of French GDP, over the period or just over 1% of Government capital expenditure. Funding allocated to Convergence regions in the Outermost Departments more than 13 times higher per head than in the rest of France.

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Evaluations of the 2007-2013 programming period