Budget 2023: Bercy promises some adjustments to the opposition

Posted Sep 20, 2022, 7:27 PMUpdated on Sep 20, 2022 at 7:54 PM

An outstretched hand, or a lure in the direction of opposition? The government concluded on Tuesday the “Bercy Dialogues” started last week with all the political groups on the future finance bill (PLF) 2023, ensuring that it was ready for “budgetary movements” in as a sign of goodwill.

“The PLF that we will present at the beginning of next week will not be the one we had planned before the ‘Dialogues de Bercy’, there will be measures added or removed”, we promise to the Ministry of Public Accounts.

While the adoption of the budget by the strong method and Article 49.3 of the Constitution without a vote seems inevitable given the political context, the government had therefore launched an unprecedented initiative at the beginning of September – the “Dialogues de Bercy” – for which the All the political groups in the National Assembly and the Senate were invited to come and discuss before the presentation of the PLF. “It was not a body of legislation or evangelization, but a real body of dialogue and consultation”, swears a source in Bercy.

Evolution on MaPrimeRénov’

All the groups finally showed up, including the RN, which had nevertheless announced that it wanted to shun the event. With therefore, in the end, some avenues for development, which will be integrated directly into the text or by amendments during the budget debate. The first concerns housing, with “extensive exchanges to ask for more global renovations”, according to Bercy. In fact, all the groups have campaigned for an improvement of the MaPrimeRénov’ system, which does not benefit enough from overall renovations.

Bercy also mentions the fields of “the fight against fraud”, or even the employment plans of the ministries. Eric Coquerel (LFI) thus insisted a lot on obtaining an end to the job cuts in the administrations of Bercy and the Ministry of Ecology. “Even if there is nothing in the budget at the moment, the government seems open to opening the debate on the indexation of rental bases, which could soar next year with inflation”, also judges a participant. .

“If there are ‘budget shifts’, they should not relate to the most major subjects likely to call into question the major balances. On the taxation of superprofits, for example, the government always seems deaf”, underlines Claude Raynal (PS), president of the Senate Finance Committee.

Forgiving review

Pending possible changes to the government’s budget projects, the oppositions in any case draw up an indulgent assessment of these “Dialogues de Bercy”. “This new meeting is not going to change everything, it is not the alpha and the omega. But at least we were able to have information upstream when we tended to learn everything in the press in previous years, it is a positive point, ”judges the deputy of Orne (LR) Véronique Louwagie , leader of the right-wing elected members of the finance committee.

Same tone on the left for the Insoumis Eric Coquerel, who believes that this meeting deserves “neither laurels nor radical criticism, as some have done to him”. “It was a compulsory exercise for the government given the new political situation, but rather useful,” said the chairman of the finance committee.

It remains to be seen whether this upstream discussion will lead this fall to less agitated debates than during the summer’s amending finance bill – Eric Woerth (Renaissance) spoke of “an XXL-sized commercial café”, summing up the feeling of a part of the majority – or will even make it possible to avoid a forced adoption of the budget by article 49.3 of the Constitution.

“The compromise is a mouse hole and we are going to play the game. But if the debates drag on, that there are obstructions and demagoguery on the expenses, the French will judge”, warned Monday the general budget rapporteur, Jean-René Cazeneuve (Renaissance), before the Association of Economic and Financial Journalists. “We are lucid, these dialogues have not changed the fact that the oppositions still want to vote against this budget”, says one at Bercy.

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