Thanks to the policy of the offers launched in 2014, the margin rate of businesses rose. It went from 31.4% to 31.8% of the value added between 2015 and 2016. This is encouraging. In a certain sense… Because of the courage and selflessness, he still will be in the next government if he wants this strategy to raise the competitiveness of the French economy will balance a day by a rebalancing of the trade balance, in chronic deficit since 2003.
In fact, in 2016, in spite of the weakness of the euro against the dollar, which is relatively close to parity, and level of the price of crude, France has seen its trade deficit grow. It amounted to 48.1 billion euros, which is 3.1 billion more than in 2015. Launched with insurance 2013 by Nicole Bricq, minister delegate for foreign Trade, the bet to balance the scales of manufacturing products is also missed because the deficit has reached 35.1 billion euros last year. It has increased by 9.2 billion euros compared to 2015.
A single pattern of satisfaction
The only positive point ? The energy bill, which increased in the second half in the wake of the rise in crude prices, has slimmed down, from 39.8 to 31.5 billion euros between 2015 and 2016.
That is all. All other indicators are in the red. Exports declined 0.6% while imports increased by 0.1%, causing a new decline in the coverage rate – the ratio of exports to imports – which now rises to 90.4%. 0.6 point less than in 2015.
” The decline in sales of intermediate goods is especially marked, notably the products of metallurgical and chemical, in a context of declining european demand and lower prices of industrial raw materials. Exports of energy products, displayed a new decline and those of agricultural products decreased substantially, in particular cereals “, detail the Customs.
In the manufacturing sector, the balance sheet is also poor. Despite the growth of exports, the deficit in automotive vehicles and automotive equipment) hollow 3.3 billion, because of the surge in imports. The delivery of the cruise ship Harmony of the Seas ” is almost the only notable improvement in the balance of manufacturing. Even the aviation sector has seen its performance fall, ” the widening of The deficit in manufacturing is explained mainly by the reduction of $ 3.7 billion surplus in aeronautics, from 22.3 billion to € 18.6 billion “, see the Customs.
The made in France is falling everywhere, or almost
At the geographical level, the gloom is also. Sales to countries of the european Union, which concentrates nearly 60% of the export traffic will stabilise (+0.3%), after +2.3 per cent). Specifically, the dynamism of sales to the new member States (NMS) and Spain compensated for the strong decline in the netherlands and more moderate with Belgium
On the other hand, exports to the third countries (non-EU) contract with the set of areas (down 2.1 % after +7.3 per cent), with the exception of Europe outside the EU (+5.2 per cent, after -1,4 %), driven by deliveries of the aeronautical. They retreated markedly to Africa (-10,5% after +4%) and the Near and Middle East (-7,2 %), after +12,7 %), primarily due to a decrease of the deliveries of the aeronautical and to a decline in sales of cereals. The degradation with Asia (-1,2 %), after +5.1 %) and the us is more moderate e (-1,3 %), after +16,5 %).
the final Touches to this disastrous balance sheet, the total number of operators in the export decreased by 0.6% to $ 124.100 legal units. “It back to all geographical areas, especially to Africa and Europe outside the EU. Exporters of computer hardware and electronics and motor vehicles are the most affected “, specify the Customs. As A comparison, Italy, and Germany, which display balances of trade surplus have battalions to export much more fleshed out. Italy count about 200,000 exporting companies and the Germany of 300,000.
market shares retreated
Yet, as stated in the balance sheet of the competitiveness carried out by the Institute COE-Rexecode, unveiled last week, the policy offers symbolized in particular by the tax credit for competitiveness and employment (CICE), the payroll tax cuts contained in the Pact of responsibility and the extent of suramortissement, has produced its effects. Thus, the unit wage cost has not increased in France by only 0.9 % in 2016, up from +1.3% in average in the euro area and +1.9% in Germany. For the period from 2012 to 2016, the differences are even more marked. In fact, the cost rose 0.8 % in France compared to 3.7 % on average in the euro area and +9.1% in Germany.
“The improvement of the cost competitiveness that has both a beginning of recovery of price competitiveness and a certain recovery of the margins of French businesses, ” says COE-Rexecode, which continues his reasoning thus : “The rise of the export price of French products, which was higher by 6 percentage points to the average increase of the export price of goods of the euro area between 2000 and 2007, has given way to a decline by 1.4 % over the period 2011-2016. The average price of euro area exports has declined a little more than the French products (-2,5 %), while the average price of German exports, meanwhile, increased by +1.3 % “.
And yet… In spite of this improvement of price competitiveness of the ” made in France, the results for 2016 from the exclusive survey of Coe-Rexecode bearing on the competitiveness of French products vary little from one year to the next. As in 2015, the european importers are consulted still consider French products as being too expensive. The figures disclosed Tuesday by the Customs go in this direction.
More serious, despite the budgetary efforts made by the government to restore their competitiveness, the share of French exports of goods and services in the euro area declined slightly in 2016, amounting to 13.4 %, after 13.6% in 2015. It amounted to 17% in 2000. “If the market share of French had remained at its 2000 level, the amount of exports of goods and services in France would be above the current level of 170 billion euros,)”, COE-Rexecode, which is estimated at 1.500 billion euros of the shortfall accumulated in the last fifteen years for France . an amount that represents nearly three-quarters of GDP tricolor annual.
The effects of Brexit
The year 2017 will be better ? For the moment, nothing allows us to affirm. One thing is certain, the Brexit is not a good news. The United Kingdom is one of the few countries with which France generates a trade surplus, close to 10 billion euros per year. If the Brexit is reflected by the establishment of important trade barriers (quotas, customs duties…), the trade balance could suffer and the deficit will widen a bit more.