Manuel Valls headed Socialist Government in France won confidence vote over market reforms

Feb 20, 2015 18:20 IST

France's Socialist Government headed by Prime Minister Manuel Valls on 19 February 2015 won the confidence vote over market reforms.

The no-confidence vote against the government was brought by opposition conservatives after Manuel Valls forced through the market reforms without parliamentary approval.

The no-confidence vote brought in National Assembly saw only 234 lawmakers voting in favour of the motion which was far short of the number required to bring down the government.

289 votes were needed to pass the motion in the National Assembly, the lower house of the parliament.

The non-passage of the no-confidence motion means that package of economic reforms automatically pass their first reading in parliament and the Manuel Valls government has the right to use the same decree in subsequent readings.

In France’s 57-year old Fifth republic, only once, a no-confidence vote has succeeded. It succeeded in 1962 when it was used to oust the government of Georges Pompidou.

Background

Earlier on 17 January 2015, Manuel Valls employed a rarely-used constitutional device called 49 – 3 decree to force through a key package of economic reforms. The package of reforms included extending Sunday shopping hours and opening up key parts of the French economy to competition.

This led to tensions between President Francois Hollande and Valls on the centrist wing of the Socialist Party and rebels on the left.

France, the Eurozone’s second-biggest economy, has been suffering from chronically high unemployment and sluggish growth from past few years.

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