No, France really isn’t beyond reform

Experts tell The Connexion that France is not as resistant to change as the number and scale of protests suggest

President Emmanuel Macron has said that France is “unreformable” even as he has been trying to introduce change.

After the gilets jaunes movement which started in November 2018 in protest at a rise in fuel tax (later abandoned), pension reform has caused major issues since December.

A wide range of professional sectors have taken part in protests and public transport has been disrupted.  

The strike has cost the country €1billion – €20million a day for SNCF, an organisation well used to strikes as it has faced at least one every year since 1947, and €3million a day for RATP.

France is seen as the bad boy of Europe, where social disruption is most likely to happen. Some reforms have successfully passed, such as decentralisation in 1982 and the autonomy of universities in 2007, but Jacques Chirac gave up his own pension reform project in 1995 because of protests, and governments often face difficulties to pass reforms because of ...

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