Elisabeth Borne named as new French PM

17 May 2022

Labour Minister Elisabeth Borne has been selected as the new Prime Minister of France by President Emmanuel Macron, only the second time in three decades that a woman has been in the role.

"I want to dedicate my nomination to all little girls and tell them to go all the way pursuing your dreams", Borne said during her inauguration speech. "Follow your dreams all the way. Nothing must hold back the fight for the place of women in society." 

Macron made the announcement on Monday, as he sought a Prime Minister with green and social policy credentials, Reuters reports

During her inaugural speech, Borne said France needed to act "faster and stronger" to tackle climate change and vowed to do more to safeguard the French people’s purchasing power. This is the primary concern amongst voters according to the polls.

There hasn’t been a female Prime Minister in France since Edith Cresson during Francois Mitterrand’s presidency 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 said to BFM television.

Outgoing PM, Jean Castex said during the transition of power ceremony: "Madame la Premiere Ministre, 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.”

As Labour Minister, unemployment in France fell to a 15-year low, whilst youth unemployment dropped to its lowest in 40 years. Reports suggest she will be tasked with helping President Macron implement tough reforms, such as increasing the retirement age.

"Mrs Borne is against raising minimum wages and for retiring at 65. Here we go for a new season of social mistreatment," said hard-left veteran Jean-Luc Melenchon.

According to a former Borne staffer: "She is a real workaholic, someone who can push on until 3 in the morning and be back again at 7 a.m.”