ECB’s Villeroy: Hope to Regain Pre-Covid Output Early 2022 in France

30 July 2020

By David Barwick – PARIS (EconoStream) – European Central Bank Governing Council member François Villeroy de Galhau on Thursday reiterated his hope that France might return to a pre-Covid level of economic activity in early 2022.

In an interview with French newsweekly Paris Match, Villeroy, called against the backdrop of limited public funds for the ‘whatever it costs’ attitude to ‘gradually give way to a more selective "when it's worth it"’ to bolster confidence, which he said was ‘the key to a relatively rapid recovery.’

Although forecasts call for French economic output to decline 10% this year, he said, ‘it may be better, so as to hope to regain the pre-Covid level of activity in early 2022.’

The €750 billion recovery fund agreed by European leaders earlier this month is ‘up to the difficulties’ stemming from the pandemic, he said. The first-ever mutualisation of debt is a ‘major step forward that initiates a real common budgetary policy’, he said.