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French National Assembly Approves 2013 Budget in 319-223 Vote

France’s National Assembly passed President Francois Hollande’s first budget, which relies more on raising taxes than on spending cuts to reduce the deficit.

Lawmakers in the lower chamber approved the 2013 budget by 319 votes to 223 votes. The bill will be discussed next month in the Senate and returns to the National Assembly in December for the final vote. Hollande’s Socialist Party and its allies hold a majority in both chambers of Parliament.

The 2013 blueprint relies on 20 billion euros ($26 billion) in tax increases, including a levy of 75 percent on incomes over 1 million euros, and a higher wealth tax. It trims spending by 10 billion euros, bringing the deficit to 3 percent of output from 4.5 percent in 2012. The budget assumes economic growth of 0.8 percent.

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