Good news for the wallet. The anti-inflation quarter in supermarkets will "obviously" be extended "by a quarter", confirmed Economy Minister Bruno Le Maire, reiterating his "determination" to "stop the price spiral" by the autumn and promising "within a few weeks" proposals for tax cuts.

Since March 15 and for three months, most supermarkets have committed to selling a selection of products at the "lowest possible price", a formula that leaves them a great deal of freedom of maneuver.

🗣️ "I know how unbearable the rise in food prices has become for the French," explains @BrunoLeMaire who recalls that he "has a large family with four children to feed"#QuelleEpoque @France2tv @LeaSalame


"What a time! (@QuelleEpoqueOff) May 20, 2023

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Inflation at nearly 16% year-on-year in March

The objective for Bercy: try to stem the galloping inflation on the shelves of supermarkets, still measured at nearly 16% over one year in March. "We will obviously extend (the operation) for an additional quarter because the summer is difficult," said Bruno Le Maire on France 2 Saturday night. "Since prices are not going to drop immediately, distributors need to commit to next summer and they have done so, so much the better."

Bruno Le Maire also "thanked" the agri-food manufacturers for having accepted new trade negotiations "to lower prices", "which means that, at the beginning of September October, we will have -- at least this is my determination -- broken the price spiral".

The main representative body of the agri-food industry, Ania, pledged last week that the 75 largest companies in the sector would reopen negotiations "before the end of the month".

"We do what our public finances allow us to do"

As early as May 11, Jacques Creyssel, general delegate of the Federation of Commerce and Distribution (FCD), had assured that distributors had "globally agreed to the extension of anti-inflation operations". System U CEO Dominique Schelcher announced that he was extending the anti-inflation quarter "until the end of the year".

According to the government, "on average for seven weeks, the prices of products in the anti-inflation quarter have fallen by 13% in the basket", an analysis described as "false" by the influential consumer association UFC-Que Choisir, which says it has noted small price increases in several brands.

On the fiscal side, while Emmanuel Macron has promised 2 billion euros in tax cuts for the middle classes by 2027, Bruno Le Maire said he will make "proposals" within "a few weeks" and estimated that "announcements can be made in a few months". "We are doing what our public finances allow us to do and I think €2 billion is already a significant sum," he said.

  • Economy
  • Bruno Le Maire
  • Minister of the Economy
  • Distribution
  • Bercy
  • Inflation
  • Supermarket