French Fin Min: We’re not building the Soviet Union
The French finance minister has rejected claims that it will force businesses to hire new employees in a bid to turn around its economic fortunes, declaring it is building a "social and economic compromise of high quality and also of high ambition".
"We're not building the Soviet Union," Pierre Moscovici told CNBC at the World Economic Forum in Davos. The government is currently in the process of adapting its economic model in a bid to boost jobs and investment, he said.
(Read More: France in a 'worrying' situation: Moscovici)
But he tried to assuage concerns that the French were about to move away from socialism.
"We don't want to destroy the social model...the French are very attached to that," he said. "We want to adapt the social and economic model in order to make it more efficient."
He said that France was in the process of simplifying its tax system, bringing down the cost of labor and reforming pensions. But he added that the government now needs to go faster and further with these "unprecedented" reforms.
The popularity of Francois Hollande, president of France, has dropped to the lowest levels since the country started taking opinion polls, according to a survey by research firm BVA in October, with only 26 percent of French people having a positive opinion of the socialist leader.
Meanwhile, Hollande is attempting to fight a stagnating economy and record high unemployment as well as allegations of a possible affair. Speculation has also reached fever-pitch in France that the country's former president, Nicolas Sarkozy, is poised to make a political comeback as well as France's National Front giving the government a massive right-wing headache.
Moscovici said that despite the mounting pressures, the main focus for the government was on France and its people.
"The main problem for this government is unemployment. We have general elections in 2017. I don't know what Nicolas Sarkozy will do, I don't care about that. I care about France. And I'm fighting the National Front and how can I fight the National Front? By the economic results," he said.
"So we need to focus to concentrate on our job, and our job is to have a better recovery."
He said recent allegations surrounding President Francois Hollande should be kept private, adding that the government is stable and has a very strong institutional system.
—By CNBC.com's Matt Clinch. Follow him on Twitter @mattclinch81