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  • Yellow vests attend a meeting at the city hall in Flagy, France, January 9, 2019.

    Yellow vests attend a meeting at the city hall in Flagy, France, January 9, 2019. | Photo: Reuters

Published 10 January 2019

He refuses to restore the tax on the rich he had scrapped, although it represents one of the yellow vests' major demands.

The French government remains committed to its neoliberal economic reforms despite the street protests against poverty and inequality, the head of the central bank governor said on Thursday, describing them as “justified.”

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Macron's Ratings Plunge After 'Yellow Vest' Protests

President Emmanuel Macron has faced since mid-November anti-government protests, originally against since-scrapped fuel tax hikes but which have snowballed into rage against the high cost of life contrasting with Macron’s arrogant responses and out-of-touch vibe.

Although the former investment bank executive has insisted he will maintain the reforms of the French economy, some economists have raised questions about whether he may be forced to scale down his ambitions in the face of waves of street protests, which enjoy large support from over half of the total population.

“The will and the necessity to reform France seems to me to be intact. What is key is that it is explained and shared, and that it is seen as just,” Villeroy said in Luxembourg.

However, Macron would still refuse to reinstore the tax on the richest citizens that he scrapped himself, although it represents one of the yellow vests' major demands.

Desperate to ease the uprising, Macron’s government announced a fake wage increase in December for the poorest workers that was actually already enacted in a 2015 bill. Police's wages, however, were actually increased despite fierce criticism over the violent repression, and the use of weapons like flashballs that have mutilated protestors in the most serious cases, including students. 

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