French Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault called on the socialist parliamentary majority to pass the 2013 budget draft which targets a deficit of 3 percent of GDP despite a flagging economy.
"I call on the majority to vote to reduce the deficit," Ayrault said responding to remarks by National Assembly socialist president Claude Bartolone saying the government's deficit goal was "impossible" and "absurd."
"We must stop the spiralling of debt. National sovereignty is at stake," Ayrault added in an interview with the local broadcaster Europe1.
On Tuesday, French legislators started examining the socialist government's first budget, which targets to add 37 billion euros (48.1 billion U.S. dollars) to the public treasury and narrow the budget deficit to 3 percent from 4.5 percent this year.
Ayrault said "France is weakened socially, economically and morally," adding that measures to stimulate growth and bolster competitiveness would be implemented in three years.