Edouard Philippe revealed as new French prime minister

Tuesday, 16 May, 2017

German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble, an arch conservative who has come to personify Berlin's focus on fiscal rectitude, had suggested that Macron's idea of creating a budget and finance minister for the euro zone was unrealistic because it would require politically thorny changes to the European Union treaty.

39-year-old Emmanuel Macron yesterday took the oath of office as president of France, with a pledge to overcome division in societies.

Later on Monday afternoon, Macron will travel to Berlin to meet Chancellor Angela Merkel, maintaining a French presidential tradition of making the first European trip to the other half of the EU's power couple.

The two men had known each other well.

Merkel says: "We each represent the interests of our own countries, but the interests of Germany are naturally closely tied to the interests of France".

Macron is France's youngest president ever and the first to be born after October 5, 1958, when President Charles de Gaulle set up the Fifth Republic from the ashes of the Fourth Republic, replacing a factional parliamentary government with a centralized one. Merkel called Macron's visit an honor and a sign of the deep friendship between the two European powerhouses. The former banker meets Merkel a day after her conservatives won a regional vote in Germany's most populous state.

Then, a large crowd outside the chancellery welcomed Macron to Berlin, with some waving European Union flags.

France's President Emmanuel Macron has appointed Édouard Philippe, a moderate centre-right legislator, as the country's new prime minister.

Asked about euro bonds, a policy that Macron has favored but has been dismissed by the German government, Merkel said, "We don't agree on every single thing".

Philippe praised Cazeneuve's "quite exceptional" ministerial career and his "constant elegance".

Conservative lawmaker Edouard Philippe has been chosen to be the next prime minister.

Macron's first week will be busy.

Macron met for an hour with his predecessor, Socialist Francois Hollance, prior to being sworn in.

Noting that Philippe comes from the right of French politics, Melenchon said: "The right has just been annexed, with a prime minister taken from its ranks, from the Republicans".

Mr Macron faces major challenges including high unemployment, especially among France's young, and low growth.

After a warm welcome from outgoing President Francois Hollande at the Elysee Palace at around 10:00 am local time (0800 GMT), Macron and Hollande held a closed-door meeting during which Macron was handed the codes to launch France's nuclear arsenal.

Monday will also see Macron name his prime minister, whose job will be to pilot liberalizing reforms aimed at reducing joblessness and reviving economic growth, the report noted.

Philippe served as Juppe's campaign spokesman during the Republicans party primary.

Prior to that he worked as a lawyer for New York City-based worldwide law firm Debevoise and Plimpton LLP.

New French President Emmanuel Macron (R) and his wife Brigitte Trogneux (L) pose on the steps of the Elysee Palace after a handover ceremony at the Elysee Palace, in Paris, France, 14 May 2017.

Philippe is mayor of Le Havre, France.

Philippe is part of the center-right Republicans and not yet a member of Macron's new party La République En Marche.

He must now try to win a majority in June parliamentary elections for his start-up Republic on the Move party, which has blown apart traditional French political boundaries.

At an elaborate ceremony at the Élysée Palace in Paris, he said his presidency would "give the French back the confidence to believe in themselves".