France’s President Emmanuel Macron has appointed Labour Minister Elisabeth Borne as the country’s new prime minister, the first woman to hold the position in three decades, after Prime Minister Jean Castex submitted his resignation Monday, setting the stage for a cabinet reshuffle as Macron embarks on his second term. Follow FRANCE 24’s live updates for all the latest developments. All times are Paris time (GMT+2).
8:11pm: PM Borne dedicates nomination to ‘all little girls’ in inaugural speech
French President Emmanuel Macron’s newly picked Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne dedicated in her inauguration speech her nomination ‘ to all little girls’.
“I want to dedicate my nomination to all little girls and tell them to go all the way pursuing your dreams,” Borne said in her speech.
In a brief inaugural address, Borne said that the country needed to act “faster and stronger” to fight climate change and pledged to further work to protect the French’s purchasing power, the No. 1 voter concern according to polls.
Borne, 61, will be the first woman named as prime minister since Edith Cresson briefly occupied the office during the presidency of Socialist leader Francois Mitterrand in the early 1990s.
“It was really time there was another woman (in that position) and I know Mrs Borne is a remarkable person with a lot of experience…I think it is a very good choice,” Cresson told BFM television.
Outgoing Prime Minister Jean Castex, during a transition of power ceremony in the court of the Hotel De Matignon, used the female form of Borne’s title in a sign of shifting linguistic customs similar to the German “Frau Bundeskanzlerin”.
“Madame la Premiere Ministre”, he said with a broad smile, adding: “The role (of Prime Minister) is not exempted from public exposure and criticism, dear Elisabeth, people even say that’s what it had been created for”, said Castex with a twink to what French call the “job from hell” – hard work in the shadow of an omnipresent president.
6:30pm: Macron names minister Elisabeth Borne new French PM
President Emmanuel Macron on Monday named Labour Minister Elisabeth Borne as his new prime minister, the first woman to head the French government in over 30 years, the Élysée Palace said in a statement.
The Élysée said that Borne would now be charged with forming a government. Until now, the only woman to head a French cabinet was Edith Cresson from May 1991 to April 1992 under president Francois Mitterrand.
5:30pm: Labour Minister Elisabeth Borne favored to replace Castex
French Prime Minister Jean Castex resigned Monday in an expected move after the reelection last month of centrist President Emmanuel Macron, who will quickly name a replacement.
Castex came to the Elysee presidential palace on Monday to formally offer his resignation, which the president Macron is expected to name a new prime minister shortly.
French media say Labour Minister Elisabeth Borne is the favorite for the job. In France, it’s common for presidents to have more than one prime minister during their terms.
Macron and his new prime minister will then hold talks in order to appoint France’s full new government in the coming days.
5:08pm: French PM Castex officially resigns
French Prime Minister Jean Castex has handed his resignation to President Emmanuel Macron, the prime minister’s office said Monday.
Macron, who needs to send a signal he has heard the frustrations of voters expressed in low turnout and big support for the radical far-right and far-left in April’s presidential election, has said he was looking for someone with green and social policy credentials to act as next prime minister.
His allies have said he will most likely appoint a woman, who would be the first since Edith Cresson briefly occupied the top job during the presidency of Socialist leader François Mitterrand in the early 1990s.
FRANCE 24’s Catherine Norris-Trent reports:
4:26pm: French PM Jean Castex expected to hand in resignation: govt sources
Castex’s move would pave the way for a widely expected cabinet overhaul by Macron after his re-election to the French presidency in April.