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France, world champion in social spending


SAccording to the first estimates from Eurostat, social protection spending in the European Union reached 4,307 billion euros in 2022, or 27.2% of GDP. At the European level as at the global level, it is in France that social protection expenditure in relation to national wealth is the highest. In 2022, they represented 31.6% of GDP. Next come Italy (30.1% of GDP) and Austria (29.4% of GDP).

At the other end of the scale, it is in Mexico (7.4% of GDP), Turkey (12.4% of GDP) and Ireland (12.8% of GDP) that the share of expenditure social is the weakest.

Since the end of the 1950s, social protection spending has increased significantly in France, going from 14.3% of GDP in 1959 to 24.5% in 1981, 29.6% in 2006 and more than 30% since 2010.

The Social Security deficit will widen

According to the Social Security financing bill, the latter’s deficit should stand at 8.8 billion euros in 2023, after 19.6 billion in 2022. Following the Covid-19 pandemic , it had reached record levels of 29.3 billion in 2021 and 39.7 billion in 2020. The Social Security hole would, however, widen again from 2024 to reach 11.2 billion euros, with expenses rising to 641.8 billion euros and revenue to 630.7 billion euros. It would increase further in the following years to stand at 15.8 billion euros in 2025, 17.5 billion in 2026 and 17.9 billion in 2027.

Finally, the debt of social security administrations stood at the end of 2022 at 271 billion euros, or 10.3% of GDP. It represented only 3% of GDP in 2001.


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