France: Expert warns of 'damaged economy' post-pandemic
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Director of Bruges Group and author of Moralitis, A Cultural Virus, Robert Oulds, warned the failures of France’s vaccination programme would mean the country would lag behind many other nations who have seen better results from their jab efforts. As a result, the slow reopening of the economy could leave many citizens struggling and looking for someone to blame. Mr Oulds suggested the vitriol will be focused on both Emmanuel Macron and the European Union.
France is undergoing an economic crisis which has seen many desperate Parisians lining up for food parcels due to the shutdown of the economy and its national debt reach higher than its total GDP.
Speaking to Express.co.uk, Mr Oulds said: “France has failed to produce its vaccine and French scientists were not as advanced as other countries are and did not get their vaccine ready.
“And then they’re also in the situation where they are in the European Union and its vaccine rollout has cost lives.
“This is not only going to create a problem where more people will die from Covid… and they will have to have more lockdowns across the European Union.
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“But it will not only cost lives but also damage the economy because just as other countries are moving out of their lockdowns and moving out of the restrictions like the UK is.
“The economy will open up and we will get back to proper economic growth and we should have a V-shaped recovery.
“France has massive debts and they have the problems of the Euro where they’re losing economic growth to Germany as the currency benefits them.”
The neighbouring country’s debt ratio is 115 percent of GDP, which equates to around £2.3trillion in debts.
France is set to ease restrictions on May 19 after President Emmanuel Macron was forced to implement another national lockdown due to new variants and cases wreaking havoc on the country’s healthcare system.
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Non-essential shops, bars and restaurants are due to open later this month.
Parisian hospitals were forced to airlift patients to other facilities as their wards ran full with Covid suffers
Mr Oulds continued: “We also see that France’s economy is not going to grow because they have more uncertainty and more lockdowns and they will have some real economic difficulties.
“Those difficulties will be magnified through the different problems that France has and that will create political instability.”
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The political analyst added the effects on the economy may already be behind the rise in crime and terror in the country in the more rural and less affluent areas of France.
He added: “That’s not going to be going away anytime soon unless they are able to get their economy back.”
Polls have shown an increase in support for right-wing National Rally leader Marine Le Pen who, in some surveys, now leads over Mr Macron.
While the eurosceptic leader lost out from the last French election, Ms Le Pen has toned down the right-wing rhetoric to appeal to more of the electorate.
She has also altered her opinion on the EU stating she would like to see it reformed rather than leave it entirely.
Despite the shift, Mr Macron still remains unpopular for some voters due to his strong support for the bloc.
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