The National Assembly votes the end of audiovisual royalties
In accordance with Emmanuel Macron’s promise to support the purchasing power of the French, the deputies voted on Saturday to abolish the fee which finances public broadcasting, despite the concerns of the media concerned. On the other hand, the National Assembly rejected a project to tax the super profits of short-headed companies.
The National Assembly voted Saturday, July 23 the abolition of audiovisual royalties as part of its support for purchasing power and rejected at the limit a tax on the “surplus profits” of large groups, but points still fiercely debated deserve to be discussed. to be specified such as the exoneration of the fuel and the renationalisation of EDF.
The abolition of fees that financed public broadcasting, a promise made by President Macron, raises many concerns about the freedom of the media concerned and future funding.
During the first reading of the amending finance bill for 2022 (PLFR), it was adopted by 170 votes against 57. The LR and RN voted in favor and the left-wing coalition Nups unanimously opposed it.
In order to address concerns about the financing of the sector, most of the LR amendments were adopted to allocate “a fraction” of VAT, amounting to around €3.7 billion.
During this often eventful session, the Minister of Public Accounts Gabriel Atal expressed his penchant for “strong public broadcasting”, while qualifying the charge as “obsolete” based on the possession of a television set. in the age of tablets and other smartphones. The fee is currently set at 138 euros per year in metropolitan France.
The future of public broadcasting in question
The main objections came from the ranks of the nups. For Inaki Echaniz (PS), this deletion is a “bad idea” that will harm stablecoins. Alexis Corbier (LFI) insisted on the fact that “guaranteeing the freedom of public broadcasting is a condition of democracy”.
On the other hand, the Minister of Culture Reema Abdul-Malak argued that “it is not the license fee that guarantees freedom” but Arcom (ex-CSA), the body which appoints the leaders of the audiovisual sector. the audience.
Leftists have accused the government of eventually shutting down public broadcasting, taking inspiration from the far right. “Zemour and Mrs. Le Pen asked for it, Mr. Macron would have done it”, launched the communist Stephen Pew.
>> read: How is public broadcasting financed in other European countries?
However, Marine Le Pen felt that “the government’s project has nothing to do with what we want to do”, namely “privatization” in due form.
After four days of heated debate on the bill in favor of purchasing power, the deputies have been scrambling since Friday on the PLFR, with the second part of the measures aimed at countering the effects of inflation.
The discussion should continue until Saturday evening, or even Sunday or Monday.
The presidential camp, deprived of an absolute majority, often has to seek support in the face of occasional joint attacks by the opposition.
super profit tax rejected
The support of LR, hoping that this draft budget would be adopted without counting on the votes of the RN, materialized by 18 votes disapproving of the tax on super profits among extremists.
But four representatives of the majority were absent, including Sacha Hooli and Caroline Janvier, who defended the principle of this tax. One of his colleagues from Kshitij voted for it.
For his part, the Minister of the Economy criticized the tax principle – “ideological thrust”, according to him – and called for “coherence” by the majority before the vote.
He welcomed on Friday offers from energy company TotalEnergies and maritime carrier CMA-CGM for pump discounts of 20 cents for one and a reduction in freight rates of 750 euros per 40-foot container for ” the other”.
The left-wing Nups coalition criticized the “inadequate” gesture and condemned the government’s refusal, citing the cases of Spain, Great Britain or Italy, which adopted extraordinary taxes on “superprofits”.
Jean-Philippe Tanguy (RN) spoke of an “obscene number” between “lobbying and defense of Macronie”.
In addition to the abolition of tariffs, the revised budget also provides for the maintenance of the tariff shield on energy or a revaluation of the index point for civil servants.
Two points will be examined in particular: the measures adopted on fuel, in particular at high price levels for several months, and the financing of the takeover bid for the renationalisation of EDF.
On fuel, the executive and LR sought an agreement this week to increase state aid, which currently stands at 18 cents per litre.
Regarding EDF, this is the first phase of a takeover bid of 9.7 billion euros aimed at getting the group out of its financial and industrial rut, and which should be completed precisely at the end of October.
This renationalization comes at a time when the energy company, heavily in debt, is going through a critical episode: the State intends to make it the “armed wing” of the greening of its energy policy and the triumph of greater sovereignty in the matter.