Hollande in Holland

By Sarah Brown President Francois Hollande’s trip to the Netherlands last Monday marked the first time a French president has made an official visit to the country in 14 years. It was Hollande in Holland — his first trip abroad since a Jan. 14 press conference at the Elysée, when he announced significant economic changes […]

Is France as Unprepared for the Future as We Think?

From the Roman writers of old to Tony Soprano’s anxious musings in the pilot episode of The Sopranos, navel-gazing is as old as Western civilization itself. Even now, American students who take French long enough will inevitably be asked to write a response to the following prompt: “Les Etats-Unis sont-ils en déclin? Repondez avec des […]

Downgrade Sparks Criticism from Government and Rating Agency

On November 8, for the second time in less than two years, Standard & Poor’s downgraded France’s sovereign debt rating to “AA with a stable outlook,” according to the agency’s report. France’s rating was last downgraded in January of 2012 from AAA to AA+, when Nicolas Sarkozy was still leading the country. The rating agency’s […]

Hollande’s Government Cautiously Moves Towards Pension Reform

In a televised presentation aired August 27, French Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault announced the planned reform of the pension system. However as much as European officials and others in France have called for structural reform of the system, the consensus is that the socialist government’s reform is cautious. Because a system of social protections is […]

Airbus Makes Historic Deal with Lion Air

The “contract of the century” has been made, Productive Recovery Minister Arnaud Montebourg proclaimed on Monday, March 18. Airbus signed an unprecedented contract with Indonesian Lion Air. President Hollande noted, “The contract is historic in its breadth — 234 planes and 18 billions of euros — and notable also for the relationship between a large […]