June 30, 2000 |
Any other June, and the little town of Millau, population 21,788, would have nothing more to worry about than the usual traffic jams of sun-seeking vacationers impatiently edging southward on Route Nationale 9. This week, though, the municipality on the Tarn River in southern France is importing 800 police officers and gendarmes. Schools, day-care centers and government offices will close early today.
January 12, 2000 |
In the latest instance of employer discontent over France's controversial 35-hour workweek, trucking companies used their rigs to block highways, tunnels and toll plazas at the country's borders Tuesday, immobilizing foreign trucks by the thousands and backing up traffic for miles. Seventy roadblocks were set up near the frontiers with Spain, Italy, Germany, Luxembourg and Switzerland as the protest wore into its second disruptive day.
June 20, 1998 |
Glamorous French Socialist Party baron Jack Lang once dismissed him as a "loser." But this week, it was Lionel Jospin, not Lang, who lunched with President Clinton at the White House and enjoyed bigwig status in Washington. One year after taking command of France's government after an upset election victory for the Socialist Party, Prime Minister Jospin is still riding high in the polls.
June 24, 1997 |
In the last decade, societies throughout the world have forsworn the rigidity of statism for the freedom and opportunity of open markets. And then there's France. The French reconfirmed their love of central authority by electing a Socialist-Communist coalition last month that vowed to raise the minimum wage--already close to $10 an hour, including mandatory benefits--cut the workweek to 35 hours, and to relax the fiscal discipline required for European economic and monetary union.
December 13, 1996 |
President Jacques Chirac, the victim of such a calamitous drop in popularity that he is now distrusted by more than half of the French, went on television Thursday to try to convince his people that he is leading them in the right direction. "We need to modernize, we need to adapt," he said. "If we don't want to understand that France has to adapt to its time, then, it is true--we have no chance to get her running again."
February 9, 1996 |
Although seen more as a brief pause in growth than the onset of recession, an unexpected slowdown in Western Europe's bellwether economies has become the stuff of front-page headlines, heated debate and dire projections. In Germany, the government announced Thursday that the ranks of unemployed had soared past 4 million, the most since World War II. In France, the government announced tax breaks and the central bank slashed interest rates to a 25-year low in a bid to generate jobs.