France's Hollande facing a tough 2013
France's Hollande facing a tough 2013
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SCRIPT: For France's president François Hollande, 2013 looks set to be a very tough year. Economic crisis has hit the French jobs market hard -- unemployment has risen for 19 consecutive months, and now stands at more than three million people. Unless Hollande can stop the rot, his own job security will start to look decidedly shaky. SOUNDBITE 1, Frédéric Dabi, IFOP opinion polls (French, 16 sec): "It can be said, without predicting the future, that as long as the government isn't able to produce results -- or even determination -- on social and economic issues, on employment, on purchasing power, on debt, it's unlikely that their popularity will go up much." Indeed just four in 10 people here say they still have a positive impression of Hollande. And with all of Europe struggling to tighten its belt, there's little chance for France to escape the general gloom. SOUNDBITE 2, Henri Sterdyniak, French Economic Indicators Observatory (French, 20 sec): "We're predicting zero growth for 2013. Austerity policies have been brought in right across Europe. There isn't a single dynamic economic factor, so the likeliest prediction is zero growth and a rise in unemployment." Hollande's response has been to change his image somewhat. When he was elected, he styled himself as an everyday man of the people. Now, he's adopting a more classically presidential stance. SOUNDBITE 3, Gaël Sliman, BVA Opinion polls (French, 15 sec): "He doesn't put it like that, but you can see that he's telling the French people that he made a bit of a mistake with his presidential style. He wanted to reject the style of Nicolas Sarkozy, which it's true French people didn't like -- but he went too far the other way." That's now changing. But if 2013 lives up to economic predictions, François Hollande will need more than a new image to guide France successfully through some very challenging times. SHOTLIST -GVs Hollande visiting Rungis factory, Dec 2012 (SOURCE: POOL/TF1, NO RESALE for non-editorial purposes) -GVs job centre -SOUNDBITE -GVs government family photo, May 2012 (SOURCE: POOL, NO RESALE for non-editorial purposes) -GVs National Assembly (SOURCE: National Assembly, NO RESALE for non-editorial purposes) -GVs Hollande in Paris -SOUNDBITE -GVs greeting crowds in Paris, Oct 2012 -GVs press conference Nov 2012 (SOURCE: POOL, NO RESALE for non-editorial purposes) -SOUNDBITE -GVs Hollande supporters at election, May 2012
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