Home Business Economy & Politics French elections: Nicolas Sarkozy vs. Francois Hollande

French elections: Nicolas Sarkozy vs. Francois Hollande

Nicolas Sarkozy

• Will balance French finances by 2016.

• Promises to call national referendums on compulsory training for the long-term unemployed and how to deal with illegal immigrants.

• In a bid to shed his reputation for favoring the rich, he promises to tax dividend income, apply a minimum 15% tax on major French corporations and introduce a levy for tax exiles who seek refuge abroad.

• To curb the excesses of the financial industry, Nicolas Sarkozy promises tougher regulation on banks and the introduction of a financial transaction tax.

• Plans to raise VAT to fund a reduction in social charges for employers and lower the cost of labor.

• Wants to halve the number of foreigners entering the country legally each year and increase deportations of illegal immigrants. Conditions for obtaining French papers and benefits will be tightened – Nicolas Sarkozy has threatened to suspend France’s membership of Europe’s visa-free Schengen zone unless he sees progress on EU external border controls.

• Threatens to impose unilateral trade restrictions in public procurement unless the EU introduces “buy European” legislation within a year.

• Backs nuclear power but says renewable energy will make up 23% of power supply by 2020.

• In the wake of shootings by gunman Mohamed Merah, Nicolas Sarkozy proposes making it an offence to access jihadist websites that glorify killing and to go abroad for jihadist indoctrination.

• Nicolas Sarkozy opposes gay marriage and euthanasia.

Nicolas Sarkozy vs. Francois Hollande

Nicolas Sarkozy vs. Francois Hollande

François Hollande

• Will balance French finances by 2017.

• Opposes a financial policy based only on austerity and has promised to renegotiate the European fiscal compact to include provisions on jobs and growth.

• His deficit-reduction measures include reversing tax breaks for the wealthy. Promises to target the rich with a 75% tax rate on those earning more than €1 million a year and a 45% tax rate for those earning more than €150,000. He plans to limit executive pay to 20 times the average wage and cut the president’s salary.

• Has outlined €20 billion of new spending over five years, including creating 150,000 state-aided jobs to tackle youth unemployment, 60,000 posts in education and more police jobs.

• Will restore the right to retire at 60 for those who began work at 18.

• Promises to fight discrimination with sanctions for companies failing to offer equal pay, the creation of a ministry of women’s rights and the allocation of half the ministerial posts in his cabinet to women.

• Wants to curb financial excess by: separating retail and investment banking and imposing a financial transaction tax; banning toxic financial products and stock options; curbing bonuses; creating a European ratings agency; and stopping banks operating in offshore tax havens.

• Supports the creation of a public investment bank to support small businesses.

• He wants to reduce the share of nuclear energy in the power supply to 50% from 75% by 2025, and promises to close the ageing Fessenheim nuclear plant but complete work on the advanced Flamanville European pressurized reactor power station.

• Will allow gay marriage and adoption for gay couples.


Diane is a perfectionist. She enjoys searching the internet for the hottest events from around the world and writing an article about it. The details matter to her, so she makes sure the information is easy to read and understand. She likes traveling and history, especially ancient history. Being a very sociable person she has a blast having barbeque with family and friends.