For Bruno Le Maire, it is a question of “coherence”. The Minister of the Economy declared on Monday, June 12, wanting to “withdraw, from the 2024 finance bill, a certain number of tax advantages on fossil fuels”, during a round table devoted to industry. green organized by the Renaissance Party. “On public money, I think it is essential to have consistency (…) This means that we cannot invest in green and continue to favor brown. It means doing what is the most difficult thing in politics, making choices. And when you make choices, you don’t satisfy everyone,” he said.
The abolition of these tax advantages could have repercussions on several sectors, such as road transport, construction and public works. According to the tenant of Bercy, it would be necessary to think about how to support these sectors during this transition: “For all those who are concerned – it can be road hauliers, building companies, public works -, that means that the construction sites are no longer profitable, that companies can lose money. So we have to look at how to support them,” he said. “Support, for example how we are going to help you, you, carriers, to invest in less polluting vehicles, with electric motors”, he adds in an ecological ideology of transition.
Bruno Le Maire also repeated his opposition to the idea of a “green ISF”, specifies Capital. This proposal was recently launched by economist Jean Pisani-Ferry and inspector general of finance Selma Mahfouz. He pointed out that the introduction of such a tax measure could cause a “fiscal allergy to the decarbonisation” of the economy among the wealthiest French people. “When we say 10% of the richest French people, it’s still 10% of French people, it’s several million people. So we have to be very careful not to arouse a tax allergy to the decarbonization of our economy” , he said.
“No contempt on our part, we are looking at all the options, including the green ISF, we have looked at that very carefully, but we consider, with the President of the Republic and the Prime Minister, that this option of increasing the taxation is not the best in a country which has the highest level of taxation of all OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) countries”, insisted Bruno Le Maire.
He also spoke out in favor of an “opposable nature of state aid” for investments in favor of decarbonisation: “And God knows that I am not a fan of the conditionality of this public aid.”
Even if Christophe Béchu, Minister of Ecological Transition, and Bruno Le Maire of the Economy claim to have the support and agreement of the executive, the latter has not really expressed it. However, the President of the Republic has long proclaimed, during the previous presidential campaign, his desire not to increase taxes and even to lower them as much as possible, as Le Figaro recalls. Since then, almost nothing has changed. Despite the rather worrying recommendations of the Pisani-Mahfouz report, the Head of State does not change sides: “It is useful to reveal the cost of the transition, but it is important to avoid the stupidity trap of debate on the taxation of the rich”, he explains ardently. “If we had the employment rate and the unemployment rate of Germany, we would create more wealth and we would not ask the question of financing”, he added, therefore choosing instead reforms which are intended progressive.