Raffarin appoints new temporary government

Jean-Pierre Raffarin, France’s newly appointed Prime Minister, yesterday announced the full composition of the new French government. His government will govern France until the legislative elections in June.

The new government is composed of 15 ministers plus 12 vice-ministers and state secretaries. The ministers are:

Interior, Interior Security and Local Freedom Nicolas Sarkozy (RPR)
Defence Michèle Alliot-Marie (RPR President)
Foreign Affairs, Cooperation and Francophonie Dominique de Villepin (former secretary General of the Elysì no affiliation)
Culture and Communication Jean-Jacques Aillagon (Director of Centre Beaubourg)
Justice Dominique Perben (RPR)
Agriculture, Food, Fisheries and Rural Affairs Hervé Gaymard (RPR)
Social Affairs, Labour and Solidarity François Fillon (RPR)
Finance, Economy and Industry Francis Mer (Director General of steel group Arcelor, no affiliation)
Health and Family Jean-François Mattéi (Démocratie Libérale)
Youth, National Education and Research Luc Ferry (no affiliation)
Equipment, Transport, Housing, Tourism and Sea Gilles de Robien (UDF)
Environment and Sustainable Development Roselyne Bachelot-Narquin (RPR)
State Reform, Spatial Planning Jean-Paul Delevoye (RPR)
Overseas Territories Brigitte Girardin (no affiliation)
Sports Jean-François Lamour (no affiliation)

 

Background

Re-elected President Jacques Chirac engaged to creating of a "mission government" and promised to focus on tackling insecurity. In January 2002, Jean-Pierre Raffarin, France's newly appointed Prime Minister, published a detailed programme for reform in his book "Pour une nouvelle gouvernance, l'humanisme en actions". His programme includes:

  • The modernisation of the republic: abolishment of ministries whose budget is below 150 million euros and move their work to the regions; separation of ministry of finance and economics; cut by half the number of civil servants.
  • Decentralisation of power: transfer powers to local bodies; more decision-making autonomy and fiscal autonomy for the regions; devolution of the national school system to the regional level.
  • Security: tighten laws on juvenile delinquents
  • Family policy:save the pension system by having state and private systems complement each other.
  • Favour policies to create wealth:allow small businesses to opt out of the 35-hour work week; protect the social security system; cap taxes on any income at 50 %; a moratorium on tax and social insurance charges for new companies in their initial phase; favour environmentally friendly technologies; ban taxes on shares belonging to a small business shareholders' pact.
  • European governance: adopt a European constitution; promote double majority in decision-making; limit unanimous voting to institutional issues and make qualified majority voting the rule; transfer the management of EU regional funds to the regions.

 

Timeline

The French legislative elections will take place in June.

 

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