household debts in France

Gross debt in France

General government debt of France refers to the debts of the state, their states and municipalities, and also of public sector institutions such as social security funds.

The government debt in the period from 2000 to 2021 was between 803.7 billion and 3.33 trillion USD. The highest level of the last years at 3.3 trillion US Dollar was reached in 2021. The budget deficit in the same year was 191.6 billion USD.

Based on the number of inhabitants, this is a debt of 49,150 USD per person. For comparison, the average debt per person in the same year in the European Union was 35,341 USD.

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Gross debt of the last 21 years in billion USD

This is how much debt France can afford

In accordance with the Maastricht Treaty, government debt in France is aggregated for the federal, state and local governments as well as state institutions, and therefore includes the debt of all public budgets. As it is gross debt, the government's assets are not deducted. According to the EU convergence criteria, each EU country must meet certain requirements. For the debt budget, these two conditions in particular are decisive:
  • Consolidated gross debt may not exceed 60% of gross domestic product (GDP).
  • The budget deficit, i.e. new annual debt, may not exceed 3% of GDP.
Between 2000 and 2021, France exceeded the 60% ceiling 20 times. The budget deficit exceeded the 3 percent limit 16 times. If a country repeatedly fails to comply with these limits, infringement proceedings can be initiated on the part of the EU. During the COVID years in particular, aid programs were launched in most countries to offset the consequences of the economic downturn. Around half of all EU countries were therefore unable to comply with these limits.

At the end of 2021, the debt of all EU countries averaged 92 percent.

YearFrance total% of GDPper capitaEU per capita
2000804.10 bn USD58.88%13,201 USD10,328 USD
2001803.74 bn USD58.34%13,099 USD10,404 USD
2002904.72 bn USD60.26%14,638 USD11,368 USD
20031,188.17 bn USD64.42%19,089 USD14,148 USD
20041,397.65 bn USD65.94%22,289 USD16,162 USD
20051,480.34 bn USD67.38%23,431 USD16,918 USD
20061,499.31 bn USD64.61%23,566 USD17,549 USD
20071,717.07 bn USD64.54%26,822 USD19,574 USD
20082,015.38 bn USD68.78%31,307 USD22,721 USD
20092,242.81 bn USD83.04%34,661 USD23,701 USD
20102,255.18 bn USD85.26%34,680 USD25,145 USD
20112,516.66 bn USD87.84%38,515 USD28,417 USD
20122,431.46 bn USD90.60%37,031 USD27,784 USD
20132,626.62 bn USD93.41%39,798 USD30,021 USD
20142,710.01 bn USD94.89%40,868 USD30,832 USD
20152,331.42 bn USD95.58%35,034 USD26,170 USD
20162,422.46 bn USD97.96%36,306 USD26,655 USD
20172,546.64 bn USD98.13%38,056 USD27,535 USD
20182,729.07 bn USD97.78%40,636 USD29,172 USD
20192,658.64 bn USD97.43%39,453 USD27,927 USD
20203,025.65 bn USD114.65%44,777 USD32,227 USD
20213,329.89 bn USD112.58%49,150 USD35,341 USD

Comparison of gross debt per capita with the European Union in U.S. dollars

      France       European Union

Budget deficit in France

household debts in FranceThe budget deficit of a country is the result of all its claims and liabilities. This includes incomes and expenses, repayments and building of new debts in other countries, but also domestic positions of the government, such as social insurance, local authorities and communities. It is the financial balance of the economic accounts. In simple terms: If a country at the end of the year has more money than at at the beginning, it is a surplus. If it is less, it is called a deficit.

The budget deficit in France in the period between 1998 and 2022 varied between 19.41 billion euros and 237.85 billion euros. In 2022, France reached a balance of -131.49 billion euros.

In ratio to population, this equals a new indebtedness of 1,941 euros per capita in France in 2022. For comparison, the average debt per capita in the European Union in the same year was 1,254 euros.

Budget deficit of the past 24 years

YearFrance total% of GDPper capitaEU per capita
1998-38.06 bn USD-2.53%-632 USD-398 USD
1999-25.73 bn USD-1.72%-425 USD-204 USD
2000-19.41 bn USD-1.42%-319 USD112 USD
2001-20.75 bn USD-1.51%-338 USD-299 USD
2002-46.05 bn USD-3.07%-745 USD-565 USD
2003-73.97 bn USD-4.01%-1,188 USD-840 USD
2004-74.25 bn USD-3.50%-1,184 USD-920 USD
2005-69.78 bn USD-3.18%-1,104 USD-822 USD
2006-56.71 bn USD-2.44%-891 USD-568 USD
2007-70.14 bn USD-2.64%-1,096 USD-360 USD
2008-95.64 bn USD-3.26%-1,486 USD-1,085 USD
2009-193.79 bn USD-7.17%-2,995 USD-2,021 USD
2010-182.16 bn USD-6.89%-2,801 USD-1,970 USD
2011-147.70 bn USD-5.15%-2,260 USD-1,463 USD
2012-133.67 bn USD-4.98%-2,036 USD-1,220 USD
2013-114.84 bn USD-4.08%-1,740 USD-1,027 USD
2014-111.52 bn USD-3.90%-1,682 USD-851 USD
2015-88.42 bn USD-3.63%-1,329 USD-574 USD
2016-89.95 bn USD-3.64%-1,348 USD-421 USD
2017-76.78 bn USD-2.96%-1,147 USD-263 USD
2018-63.89 bn USD-2.29%-951 USD-134 USD
2019-83.63 bn USD-3.06%-1,241 USD-191 USD
2020-237.85 bn USD-9.01%-3,520 USD-2,317 USD
2021-191.58 bn USD-6.48%-2,828 USD-1,852 USD
2022-131.49 bn USD-1,941 USD-1,254 USD

(negative numbers = deficit)
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