French Finance Minister Ramps Up Steps to Combat Continuing High Inflation

France has been ramping up the fight against inflation as the 11.1% rate has been running for 5 consecutive months, which is almost twice the overall rate for the year. Actually, the current inflation rate had eased down from its peak last year. Yet the cost of living, is still high particularly for food.

Manufacturers and retailers of consumer goods are passing blame on each other for being the party responsible for the increases in the prices of consumer goods. The increases are deemed unreasonable because in recent months, the prices of raw materials have been falling.

France Finance Minister Calls on Food Retailer and Suppliers to Reduce Prices

France’s Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire held a two-day meeting in June with executives and representatives of 75 producers and retailers of food products in the country. The long and short of the talks held by the Finance Minister, had companies committing to freezing the price or slashing down the prices of some 5,000 everyday products.

Minister Le Maire said the companies had also agreed to engage in annual price negotiations. This will initially take place this coming September in order to have a view of the price projections for 2024, starting January.

Only 25 of Those Who Agreed Have Honoured The Commitment

In his recent announcement of the agreements entered with suppliers and retailers in June, Minister Lenier revealed that only 25 of the group of 75 producers and retailers of consumer goods had so far reduced prices; and only on a limited number of products.

The Finance Minister also revealed that multinationals Nestle, PepsiCo and Unilever are among the companies that refused to cooperate with the agreement. He also warned that retailers who did not pass on supplier’s price cuts to their customers are likely to face sanctions.
Minister Le Maire also said anti-fraud authorities would conduct checks to ensure the producers and retailers who signed the agreement had complied with their commitments.