Nicolas Sarkozy, the French president, came short of declaring his reelection bid while announcing the latest tax reforms to reduce the national budget deficit. President Sarkozy wants to increase the basic consumption tax to 21.2 percent and impose a 0.1 percent levy on financial transactions. These are his so-called “shock measures” meant to show that he has the audacity to turn around the faltering economy just before the presidential elections. Donning the hat of a “reformer” and having won the support of German Chancellor Angela Merkel, President Sarkozy proudly declared that the financial crisis is “calming down” and that Europe is no longer on the edge of the abyss. In an interview with French journalists President Sarkozy said that he wants to set an example that those who helped bring about the crisis will be held accountable. However, his tax reforms only target the shares and not the bonds. Sarkozy appearing somber in his television appearance reversed his opposition and agreed to introduce the bold reforms. The president will also introduce more free labor laws to benefit the companies and the unions. President Sarkozy said that such measures would bring an end to France’s often criticized 35-hour working week.
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Mr. Abhishek Joshi serves as associate editor of The Seoul Times. He graduated from the School of Electrical Engineering of Seoul National University. He was also a member of SNU Quill, first English magazine from Seoul National University, as a writer.
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