May 15, 2017 / 6:33 PM / in 2 months

New French prime minister took job because of "unique" situation

1 Min Read

PARIS, May 15 (Reuters) - France's new Prime Minister Edouard Philippe took the job offered to him by President Emmanuel Macron because the country is in a "unique situation", he said on Monday hours after his appointment was announced.

"I told myself that the situation we were in was so unique that we should try something that had never been tried before," he said on TF1 television.

He also reaffirmed Macron's commitment to business-friendly labour reforms.

Philippe, a conservative from The Republicans party, is the first postwar prime minister to be chosen voluntarily by a president who is from a different party.

Centrist Macron, inaugurated on Sunday, is trying to build broader support around his own Republic on the Move party, which is only a year old and has never fought a legislative election, and already has the support of a number of defecting Socialist lawmakers.

France's legislative elections are due to take place in June. (Reporting by Andrew Callus; Editing by Geert De Clercq)

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