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Socialists plan 300,000 jobs

Party pledges to combine income tax and CSG social charge but election plans derided as a rehashing of old policies

CREATION is the key word in the Socialist Party’s list of 30 key targets for the 2012 presidential campaign, with plans for 300,000 jobs for young people, a new tax to include both impôt sur le revenu and the CSG social charge, and a new ceiling for rents.

The party will pay for its new measures by getting rid of €50 billion of the €70bn of “useless” tax advantages such as the bouclier fiscal tax shield, the non-taxation of overtime, reductions in VAT for restaurants. It will also retain the ISF wealth tax.

If elected in the 2012 presidential campaign, the party will also give foreign people the right to vote in local elections.

However, parts of the plan have been attacked from right and left as just a rehashing of old policies. The plan for 300,000 jobs “for the future” over five years by setting up an environmental innovation programme has been criticised along with plans for an anonymous CV as just a rehashing of policies from the era of former Prime Minister Lionel Jospin.

Elsewhere, the party plans to restore the retirement age at 60.

It also plans to pull out of nuclear energy in 20 years by changing the mix of power sources and encouraging renewable energy.

A variable VAT rate will be introduced for products and projects with an ecological impact: increasing VAT for pollutants.

Oil company profits will be taxed to help pay for aid in insulating properties and developing renewable energy.

A public investment bank will be set up to give France back its “competitivity and performance” and to promote agriculture and put “the economy before finance”.

It will limit “pay abuses” in companies with partial state participation by setting a pay ceiling for bosses – a proposal that has already seen suggestions that it would mean halving the salaries of the bosses of Renault and EDF. Bonuses and stock options would be taxed in the same way as pay.

Pay equality for the sexes would be guaranteed as a condition of companies keeping exonerations on social charges. Company taxes would also be reduced for firms who reinvested profits, but increased for those who paid them out in dividends.

Two moves against discrimination are planned by giving homosexuals the right to get married and by introducing the widescale introduction of anonymous CVs.

Rental property abuses will be halted by limiting the amount rents can be raised, especially in high-demand areas.

The party plans to recruit an extra 10,000 gendarmes and local police to improve public safety.

Doctors would also get encouragement to set up in places without good GP cover.

Despite the party’s document with 30 priorities, Ms Aubry admitted that, in fact, there was only one : to get Nicolas Sarkozy out of the Elysée Palace.

She lambasted the president for his lack of stature, lack of voice in the world, lack of ability to unite the French people and lack of ability in dealing with the Middle East to tell the difference between diplomacy and business.

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