France Analysis

Is ex-minister Montebourg preparing a bid for the French presidency in 2017?

He remains one of the most fascinating and colourful figures in French politics. Arnaud Montebourg was a high-profile figure in the government of President François Hollande, who as economy minister had a very public spat with a US business boss. In August 2014 he quit after disagreeing with the government's policies and went off to work in commerce. In the last 18 months Montebourg has kept a low public profile but has been assiduously meeting key figures and thinkers on the French Left. So is he, as many believe, discreetly preparing a bid for the French presidency in 2017? Lénaïg Bredoux reports.

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He has never made a secret of it: Arnaud Montebourg sees himself as a candidate for the French presidency. Since his abrupt departure from President François Hollande's government in 2014, the former high-profile economy minister has been discreetly taking soundings, discussing and observing. It looks to many as if he is quietly preparing a bid to be the Left's candidate in the 2017 presidential elections.

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