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France's new president in Berlin after naming prime minister

19 May, 2017, 16:23 | Author: Alberta Rodriguez

According to Yves-Marie Cann, the director of political studies at Elabe research company, Philippe's experience as an elected official, especially in a local community, would be an important contribution to the new government of President Emmanuel Macron. "Europe needs your energy, imagination and courage and when I say Europe I am not thinking of the institutions, but millions of Europeans who see your victory as a sign of hope", Tusk said.

On the other side of the political divide, Mr Macron's decision not to put up an REM candidate to oppose former Socialist prime minister Manuel Valls in his constituency ties Valls closer and makes it hard for a divided left to re-unite. Melenchon urged them not to give Macron a parliamentary majority.

"Take Libya, for example, after years of opposing policies between the defence and foreign ministry, this is an opportunity to just decide on one policy", said another diplomat. When Juppe was beaten, Philippe switched his support to Francois Fillon for the French presidency but then quit the campaign when prosecutors started investigating allegations that Fillon's family benefited illegally from cushy taxpayer-funded jobs.

His appointment in Macron's government is a signal to right-wing voters ahead of June parliamentary elections. Philippe's age reinforces the generational shift in France's corridors of power and the image of youthful vigor that Macron is cultivating.

Philippe, a 46-year-old MP and mayor of the northern port of Le Havre, comes from the moderate wing of the rightwing Republicans party and is seen as a pragmatist.

The government will be formally presented on Wednesday after Mr Macron's office delayed the announcement, initially expected on Tuesday, while authorities check the tax records and backgrounds of potential ministers, in an effort to prevent any potential conflict of interest.

The presidential Elysee Palace announced the timing in a statement on Twitter.

This item has been corrected to show that Goulard is 52 years old, not 59.

France's new president has assembled his cabinet with figures from the left and right.

Merkel suggested last week that Germany's labor-market overhaul under her predecessor, Social Democrat Gerhard Schroeder, could hold lessons for France. She replied: "I am the last person who is going to come and say what France has to do". She added that there have been many proposals over the years for the development of the 19-nation eurozone. "And then we'll discuss where we can cooperate well together".

Merkel called for "new dynamism" in the countries' relationship.

Macron is to meet Merkel in Berlin later Monday on his first foreign trip, a day after he took office.

"The French agenda will be an agenda of reform in the coming months, in economic, social and educational terms", he said.

In Berlin, Macron declined to answer a question about his new prime minister, only saying the choice of Philippe is part of the new political landscape he's promoting.

The visit signalled Mr Macron's intentions to move rapidly on campaign promises to revive support for the beleaguered European Union by reforming and strengthening it.


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