February 2, 2015 / 6:29 PM / in 3 years

French economy minister says received death threats over reforms

PARIS (Reuters) - French Economy Minister Emmanuel Macron has had death threats from legal officials whose profession he is trying to reform, he told lawmakers reviewing his pro-growth bill on Monday.

French Economy Minister Emmanuel Macron attends a debate to introduce his reform law project at the National Assembly in Paris January 26, 2015. REUTERS/Christian Hartmann

Macron is steering through parliament a bill that includes loosening entry barriers for legal jobs such as “notaires” - comparable to British solicitors or American notaries.

A former investment banker who replaced Arnaud Montebourg in the position of economy minister last year, Macron, 37, said he had filed a complaint over death threats he had received from “certain judicial officers”.

And, rejecting arguments from notaries who said the reform threatened thousands of jobs, Macron said their aim was to “raise fears, especially among the weakest employees in these offices”.

“I think this is unworthy of our debates, it’s even almost worrying coming from public and ministerial officers,” he told members of the lower house of parliament.

France is under pressure from European Union partners to reform its economy, the second largest in the euro zone, after it conceded it would miss targets to cut its public deficit in 2015.

The European Commission has said it will judge the efforts of President Francois Hollande’s government early next March.

For a list of reforms included in France’s pro-growth bill, click on:

Reporting by Emile Picy and Michel Rose; Editing by Louise Ireland

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