Bruno Le Maire

Last updated on 8 October 2017

Bruno Le Maire (born 15 April 1969) is a French politician and former diplomat. He served as Minister of Food, Agriculture and Fishing from June 2009 to May 2012[1] and was appointed in May 2017 to be Minister of the Economy.

Informal meeting of economic and financial affairs ministers (ECOFIN). Handshake, Eurogroup Toomas T%C3%B5niste and Bruno Le Maire (36840346850) (cropped).jpg
Informal meeting of economic and financial affairs ministers (ECOFIN). Handshake, Eurogroup Toomas Tõniste and Bruno Le Maire (36840346850) (cropped).jpg

Early life and educations

Bruno Le Maire was born on 15 April 1969 in Neuilly-sur-Seine.[1][2] He is the son of Maurice Le Maire, an executive at the oil company Total and Viviane Fradin de Belâbre, a headmistress of private Catholic schools, mainly Lycée Saint-Louis-de-Gonzague.[3] Le Marie was educated at Lycée Saint-Louis-de-Gonzague until he obtained his baccalauréat.

Le Maire began attending École Normale Supérieure in 1989 where he studied French literature. He graduated from Sciences Po in 1995 and was accepted into École nationale d'administration (ENA) in 1996.[1][2][4][5]

Bruno Le Maire is married to painter, Pauline Doussau de Bazignan who is the mother of his four sons.[6][7][8] His wife was employed as his parliamentary assistant from 2007 to 2013.[9]

He speaks French, English and German.

Time with Dominique de Villepin

After leaving ENA in 1998, Bruno Le Maire found a job in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Development. He eventually joined the a team assisting the Secretary General of the Office of the President, Dominique de Villepin. He went on to a role of Foreign Affairs Advisor in the Foreign Affairs ministry in 2002,[10] then onto an advisor role in the Interior ministry in 2004.[11]

Following several roles in Government including one working directly with Dominique de Villepin, Le Maire was chosen to be political advisor to the Prime Minister. In July 2006, Le Maire was appointed to the role of being Chief of Staff for the Prime Minister, replacing Pierre Mongin[12] remaining in the role until Villepin's departure from the office of Prime Minister.

Career

From 2007 to 2008, he was a member of the National Assembly of France, representing Eure's 1st constituency.[4][5] After becoming a political advisor to the UMP, Le Maire was appointed to be Secretary of State in charge of European Affairs, replacing Jean-Pierre Jouyet, in December 2008, serving until 2009.[1][2][13]

From 2008, Le Maire served as a political advisor for the Union for a Popular Movement.[1][5] He also serves as a council member of Evreux.[1][5]

Minister of Food, Agriculture and Fishing, 2009–2012

In June 2009, Le Maire became the new Minister of Food, Agriculture and Fishing in the government of François Fillon.[1][2] During his tenure at the Ministry, he created a new framework to modernize French agriculture, food and fishing. He also hosted the G20 Agriculture summit in 2011, which resulted in the creation of AMIS (Agricultural Market Information System). The main objective of AMIS is to monitor the global agricultural market under a rotating presidency. An intervention Forum can be convoked if the presiding country judges it necessary.

Candidacies for leadership roles

On August 2012, Le Maire announced that he would be a candidate for the presidency of the Union for a Popular Movement, competing against former Prime Minister François Fillon, Secretary General Jean-François Copé and former Minister for Ecology Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet. He decided to develop a reformist line and to focus his campaign around four main axes:

  • Enhancing European economic integration
  • Strengthening French entrepreneurship and economy
  • Going back to the values of respect and authority in society
  • Renewing generations in political parties.

But he failed to obtain the necessary number of sponsors.

In November 2014, Le Maire obtained 29.8% of votes against Nicolas Sarkozy in the election for the presidency of Les Republicains (formerly UMP).

Le Maire was considered a serious challenger of the 2016 center-right primary as the polls suggested he could be third-placed but got a poor result with 2.4%. He became LR candidate François Fillon’s international affairs spokesman, but resigned when Fillon was embroiled in a financial scandal during his campaign.[14] Le Maire has since distanced himself from his party, calling for the right to work constructively with Macron to ensure the president's five years in office succeeds and prevents the far-right National Front making further electoral inroads.[3]

On 17 May 2017, The Republicans secretary-general Bernard Accoyer issued a statement that anyone from the party that was a member of the government was no longer a member, including Le Maire.[15][16]

Minister of the Economy, 2017–present

In May 2017, Le Maire was appointed by President Emmanuel Macron Minister of the Economy in the Philippe Government. In this capacity, he is supported by Gerald Darmanin, the budget minister.[17] Shortly after being appointed as the Minister of Economy, Le Maire defected to La Republique En Marche ! following conflicting reports that he was excluded from the Republicans party.[18][19] Le Maire was able to win reelection in his constituency after beating National Front candidate, Fabienne Delacour.

Bruno Le Maire vowed on the 9 July 2017 to put forward a plan to protect French companies from foreign takeovers.[20]

Le Maire caused controversy on July 20, 2017 when he told the French Parliament's economic affairs committee, "The United Kingdom has a remaining balance to pay to the EU budget of €100 billion"[21] The view held by Le Maire has been shared by European Leaders since April 2017 with some of them believing the "divorce-bill" will lead the UK to owing the European Union £50 billion[22] Jean Claude Juncker has said that Britain's exit bill will be "hefty" and can be as high as €100 billion.[23] This is following Le Maire promising to set up a special court to handle English-law cases for financial contracts after Brexit during a conference in New York.[24]

Other activities

Politic positions

Domestic policy

During the conservative primaries in 2016, Le Maire shifted to the right, taking a tough stance on law and order and national identity issues. He called for the immediate expulsion of foreigners regarded as suspect by the security services, the deportation of foreign nationals who complete jail terms,[3] and a curb of refugee numbers.[26]

Economic policy

Le Maire has set out a free-market economic agenda, calling for the privatisation of France's labour offices, the end of subsidised jobs and capping of welfare benefits.[3]

In 2016, however, Le Maire was quoted as saying the prospect of Britain leaving the European Union was a “fabulous opportunity for France” as it would remove the bloc’s main champion of deregulation.[27] He has expressed his opposition against the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP)[27] and also argued for a more protectionist trade policy in order to better defend against “dumping” by China.[28]

In August 2017, he called upon EU nations to step up efforts to address how they tax the digital economy and stated that a “new momentum” was needed to get a fairer contribution from digital platforms, after a report that Airbnb paid less than €100,000 of taxes in France in 2016. He categorised low tax payments as "unacceptable".[29]

Foreign policy

On foreign policy, Le Maire is a traditional Gaullist, favouring French national independence.[3] He has argued for a reinforced European defense policy to secure the bloc’s exterior borders and fight terrorism, with more spending on the military by Germany in particular.[28]

Personal life

Le Maire is married to Pauline Doussau de Bazignan.[30] They have four children.

Depiction in film

In the movie La conquête (The conquest), about Nicolas Sarkozy's career, he was played by Emmanuel Noblet.

Bibliography

  • Le Ministre. Editions Grasset, 2004
  • Des hommes d'Etat. Editions Grasset, 2007 (2008 Edgar Faure Prize)
  • Jours de pouvoir, Editions Gallimard, 2013

References

  1. ^ a b c d e f g Webpage Archived 28 June 2009 at the Wayback Machine.
  2. ^ a b c d Biography Archived 24 March 2010 at the Wayback Machine.
  3. ^ a b c d e John Irish (May 17, 2017), Macron picks pro-EU conservative Le Maire as French finance chief Reuters.
  4. ^ a b OECD Archived 6 June 2011 at the Wayback Machine.
  5. ^ a b c d e Long-Term Investors Club Archived 27 July 2011 at the Wayback Machine.
  6. ^ "Bruno Le Maire: L’agriculture n’est pas une voie de garage" (in French). Retrieved 2017-07-22.
  7. ^ "L’étrange emploi de la femme de Bruno Le Maire". www.20minutes.fr (in French). Retrieved 2017-07-22.
  8. ^ "L'étrange emploi de la femme de Bruno Le Maire à l'Assemblée nationale entre 2007 et 2013". Le Huffington Post. Retrieved 2017-07-22.
  9. ^ Mathieu, Mathilde. "L'emploi flou de l'épouse de Bruno Le Maire". Mediapart (in French). Retrieved 2017-07-22.
  10. ^ Arrêté du 30 juillet 2002 portant nomination au cabinet du ministre, retrieved 2017-07-22
  11. ^ Arrêté du 22 avril 2004 portant nomination au cabinet du ministre, retrieved 2017-07-22
  12. ^ Arrêté du 12 juillet 2006 relatif à la composition du cabinet du Premier ministre, retrieved 2017-07-22
  13. ^ "Wikiwix's cache". archive.wikiwix.com. Archived from the original on 4 December 2014. Retrieved 22 July 2017.
  14. ^ Cynthia Kroet (March 1, 2017), Bruno Le Maire quits François Fillon’s team Politico Europe.
  15. ^ "Bernard Accoyer on Twitter". Twitter. Retrieved 2017-05-18.
  16. ^ "Macron's new-look government stretches across French political spectrum". Reuters. 2017-05-17. Retrieved 2017-05-18.
  17. ^ Factbox: Ministers in new French government Reuters, May 17, 2017.
  18. ^ Berdah, Arthur; Boichot, Loris (2017-05-18). "Pour Baroin, Le Maire et Darmanin sont des "prises d'otages", pas des "prises de guerre"". Le Figaro (in French). ISSN 0182-5852. Retrieved 2017-07-22.
  19. ^ magazine, Le Point, (2017-05-22). "Législatives : Bruno Le Maire, candidat sous l'étiquette La République en marche". Le Point (in French). Retrieved 2017-07-22.
  20. ^ "Le Maire Vows to Protect Big French Companies From Predators". Bloomberg.com. 2017-07-09. Retrieved 2017-07-22.
  21. ^ "France to Britain: ‘We want our money back’". POLITICO. 2017-07-20. Retrieved 2017-07-22.
  22. ^ "Britain will get money back from the EU instead of paying to leave under plans being considered by ministers". The Telegraph. Retrieved 2017-07-22.
  23. ^ "€100bn to leave the EU? 'You must be mad'". Sky News. Retrieved 2017-07-22.
  24. ^ "In New York, France promises English-law contracts after Brexit". Mail Online. Retrieved 2017-07-22.
  25. ^ Members European Council on Foreign Relations.
  26. ^ Emmet Livingstone (January 14, 2017), François Fillon will curb refugee numbers in France, says aide Politico Europe.
  27. ^ a b Nicholas Vinocur (August 18, 2016), Brexit is ‘fabulous’ for France, says Bruno Le Maire Politico Europe.
  28. ^ a b Nicholas Vinocur (May 11, 2016), From ‘yes man’ to his own man: Bruno Le Maire’s EU gamble Politico Europe.
  29. ^ Agnew, Harriet; Brunsden, Jim (10 August 2017). "France urges ‘new momentum’ in taxation of US tech groups". Financial Times. Retrieved 12 August 2017.
  30. ^ L'étrange emploi de la femme de Bruno Le Maire à l'Assemblée nationale entre 2007 et 2013, The Huffington Post, 8 October 2013
Political offices
Preceded by
Michel Barnier
Minister of Agriculture
2009–2012
Succeeded by
Stéphane Le Foll
Preceded by
Michel Sapin
Minister of the Economy
2017–present
Incumbent

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