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France signals revision to 2013 growth forecast

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

French President Francois Hollande said France's growth forecast for 2013 could be reviewed in coming days as the country's accounting court warned government targets for the year had "little chance" of being achieved.

"There's no use in posting targets if they can't be reached," Hollande said at a news conference while adding that an adjustment to the 0.8-percent growth target for 2013 could come soon "if necessary".

The comment came just hours after France's accounting court criticised the government for holding to an over-ambitious 3.0-percent of output deficit target for 2013.

"The 3.0 percent deficit target has but few chances of being reached, notably because of a growth level likely to be below forecasts," said Cour des Comptes head Didier Migaud while presenting the watchdog's annual report.

Migaud, a former Socialist chairman of French parliament's finance committee, warned that public debt would grow in 2013 "to reach 90 percent of gross domestic product and will likely continue to grow in 2014 and 2015 despite planned austerity measures.

The accounting court stressed that the government had to focus much harder on cutting expenditure.

The Socialist government of Francois Hollande meanwhile says that public debt will begin to contract next year.

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/130212/france-signals-revision-2013-growth-forecast