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France told to reform, cut more to spur growth

Tuesday - 3/19/2013, 7:53am  ET

German Chancellor Angela Merkel, right, and France's President Francois Hollande arrive for a joint statement before their meeting with European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso at the chancellery in Berlin, Monday, March 18, 2013. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)

PARIS (AP) -- The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development says France needs to do more to reduce labor regulations, cut taxes and spending, and get young people into the workforce.

In an economic report on France released Tuesday, the economic watchdog said the country's economy with likely only grow 0.1 percent this year -- significantly below the 0.8 percent the French government initially predicted. France is expected to soon revise that estimate.

The report noted that France has made some progress, including a proposal that would make it easier for companies to fire employees. But Secretary-General Angel Gurria said that more needs to be done to encourage companies to hire.

He said: "The performance in the labor market of young people and seniors is still the Achilles' heel."


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