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"The reason is simple: because it's in people's heads. If the consumer no longer consumes, he won't change just because we add or subtract one VAT point, it's because he's scared for his future, he's scared for his job and says to himself: 'I must save, because bad times are coming'.
"In France, we chose investment because when we put France into debt by taking money to invest, in return we have assets, infrastructure. When you put your country into debt to pay for operating costs, you have nothing in return for your debt and you ruin the country.
"If the English did that it's because they don't have any industry left. Gordon Brown cannot do what I am doing with carmakers [giving them up to 6 billion euros]... in construction and other industries, because they haven't got any left."