Will Macron reforms affect UK expats in France

Published:  25 Jul at 6 PM
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Tagged: France, Euro
France’s new president is setting out a raft of changes planned for the next few years, but will they affect British expats?

Given that, at present, Britishers living across the channel in France are unsure whether they will be able to stay, the changes about to be brought in by order of the new president may affect little or nothing in the average expat's lifestyle. However, those who’ve managed to achieve permanent residency or other means of remaining will notice the difference via their wallets, their internet connections and the French government’s new stance on the environment.

For the French, Macron’s presidency is likely to be as untypical as that of President Trump’s across the pond, but is expected to be far more productive and even innovative. The first major change, however, is sure to bring disapproval, as it raises the price of a packet of cigarettes to 10 euros from its present seven, with the aim of raising a generation of non-smokers.

Expat parents cautious about the need for childhood vaccinations won’t be overjoyed to find they will become compulsory next year, and a promised reimbursement of all charges for dental healthcare, hearing aids and glasses seems to only apply to French nationals. The present state of emergency caused by recent terror attacks will end in November, and reforms of the Baccalaureate examinations for secondary school leavers will come into force in 2021.

The reintroduction of national service for young people may or may not affect expat families, but the guarantee of high-speed internet access across the entire country from 2022 will be welcomed, especially by the afore-mentioned young people! Much-needed environmental measures will include banning oil and gas exploration, and the total recycling of all plastics will be introduced by 2025.

For low-paid workers drawing the minimum wage, employee contributions will be slashed, saving workers an average of 250 euros a year, but the biggest cuts are to be reserved for corporate taxes, due to be cut to 25 per cent in order to attract foreign businesses. More financially-based reforms include public spending and the ‘unfair’ council tax will also be slashed, whilst benefits for the disabled and elderly are to be increased.

Source: The Local, France
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