The campaign for the presidential election does not prevent revolving door, these women and men of power who go back and forth between politics and the private sector. Latest example to date: the former Minister of the Economy, François Baroin, appointed president of the British bank Barclays in France.
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Aged 56, François Baroin was several times minister of right-wing governments between 2005 and 2012: of the Economy, of the Budget and of the Interior. Until last year, the mayor of Troyes (Aube), headed the powerful Association of Mayors of France.
François Baroin already had functions within the British bank. Since 2018, he has acted as an adviser to Barclays in France. It is a new stage which is crossed because the post of president of Barclays France is created for the occasion. The British bank fully assumes this choice: spiritual son of Jacques Chirac – who took him under his wing on the death of his father Michel Baroin, boss of Fnac – François Baroin has a vast network, he maintained relations with many of entrepreneurs. This is called enhancing your address book, the ideal profile for developing relationships with major customers and recruiting new ones.
François Baroin joins a long list of former politicians who have gone private. In addition to Dominique de Villepin or Nicolas Sarkozy, who have once again become a lawyer or head of a consulting firm, we can cite the former colleague of François Baroin, Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet, Minister of Ecology under Nicolas Sarkozy, who became a partner in a private equity firm. Luc Chatel, former minister of Chirac, is today at the head of the Automobile Platform, which represents the interests of the sector. Renaud Dutreil, minister between 2002 and 2007, notably represented the luxury group LVMH in the United States before returning to France to invest in the Charentaise industry there.
On the left, Bernard Cazeneuve, former Prime Minister, now pillar counsel of the August Debouzy law firm; Michel Sapin, former Minister of Finance, also reconverted. Impossible to be exhaustive. According to a calculation made by the magazine Challenges, since the 1990s, some sixty parliamentarians and ministers have taken the plunge from the benches of the Assembly to the private sector.