French Parliament have adopted austerity measures which will take effect in January 2012 increasing the current rate of TVA to 7% and as a consequence the cost of many consumer goods and services nationwide. Coupled with a rise in gas and transport costs, this could be a tough year for French households.
Basic comestibles such as water, fruit and veg and some non-alcoholic beverages will remain at 5.5%. Luxury goods such as caviar will continue to attract 19.6% sales tax whilst chocolate an foie gras will retain their current 5.5% status as a basic food item.
Households can expect to pay on average an extra 4.4% on their gas bills this winter, the government have indicated that electricity prices will not be affected.
France's largest union the CGT has called for members to strike nationwide on the 18th of January in protest of current austerity measures.