France has long prided itself on its generous labor laws, that give workers more security and more perks than in most European countries. But hit by the eurozone crisis and an ageing population, France now needs reform
The leaders of Germany and France spoke with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko by phone on Sunday, discussing economic reforms and a tenuous ceasefire that has been repeatedly violated since September.
French lawyers, notaries and bailiffs have demonstrated in Paris against new reforms to reduce barriers to enter their highly regulated professions. Proposals to extend Sunday opening hours have also been rebuked.
Global financial ratings agency Fitch has cut its outlook on France to AA, due to a lack of reform. The move puts the eurozone's second-largest economy on the same level as that of heavily indebted Belgium.
Workers in Italy demonstrated in large numbers and clashed with police in a nationwide strike on Friday against proposed government reforms. Unions protested a new law that enables firms to easily lay off employees.
© 2014 Deutsche Welle | Legal notice | Contact