France's Macron rules out new COVID-19 curbs ahead of Wednesday meeting

  • World
  • Wednesday, 05 Jan 2022

French President Emmanuel Macron is seen on a screen as he delivers his New Year's speech to the nation at the Elysee Palace in Paris, France, December 31, 2021. REUTERS/Christian Hartmann

PARIS (Reuters) - French President Emmanuel Macron late on Tuesday ruled out new COVID-19 health restrictions as he said decisions made last week will stay in force, when asked about a need for them as infections surged ahead of a government meeting on Wednesday.

Also asked about how to refinance France's heavy debt due to the pandemic, the president said this would be possible through increased economic activity, adding that as long as he was in office, there would be no tax hikes.

France registered a new record of around 270,00 new daily cases on Tuesday.

In the detailed interview, Macron's first in the new year, the president also said he had a good mind to run for re-election in April, but avoided to explicitly announce his intention to run.

"There is no false surprise. I would like to do it," Macron said.

As the clear favourite in the polls and only candidate in the field, Macron has not yet officially said he was running, although his lieutenants are already preparing a campaign.

(Reporting by Tassilo Hummel; Editing by Mark Porter and Marguerita Choy)

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