The minimum wage and several social benefits in France have been increased to keep up with rising inflation. The price of gas, having been capped by the government, remains unchanged.
Inflation has reached 4.8 percent over the last year, according to the national statistics agency, Insee. This has led to an automatic increase in the minimum wage of 2.65 percent, starting 1 May.
The gross hourly minimum wage (Smic) goes up from €10.57 to €10.85.
Just over 2 million employees in France will be around €33 per month better off, with the net monthly salary for a full-time worker rising from €1,269 to €1,302.64.
Some state benefits are also increasing. Family allowance, the disabled persons’ allowance and RSA (income support) go up by 1.8 percent.
The back-to-school allowance (ARS), paid in August, also goes up to €376.98 for children aged 6 to 10, €397.78 for those aged 11 to 14 and 411.56 euros for teenagers aged 15 to 18.
A new payment system for jobseekers undergoing training has come into effect. Trainees aged 16-18 will be paid €200 instead of the current €130. For trainees aged between 18 and 25, it will be €500 and €685 per month for those aged 26 and over.
The price of certain brands of cigarettes, including Lucky Strike, Rothmans, Vogue and Winfield, has gone down by an average of 10 cents at tobacconists.
Black boxes for new cars
All new vehicles on sale in France must now be fitted with a’ black box recorder’, similar to those used in planes, in line with EU legislation voted in 2019. The measure will be extended to all cars, including used vehicles, by 2024.