May 19, 2019 / 12:28 PM / 3 months ago

France's Le Maire says a Le Pen win in EU elections would hurt euro

French Economy and Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire delivers a speech during a high-level forum on debt at the Finance ministry in Paris, France, May 7, 2019. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

PARIS (Reuters) - A win by Marine le Pen’s far-right Rassemblement National party in next week’s European parliament elections could hurt the euro and damage the French economy and industries, Economy Minister Bruno Le Maire said on Sunday.

Opinion polls show Le Pen’s party, formerly known as the National Front, to be neck-and-neck with President Emmanuel Macron’s centrist Republic On the Move.

“If the nationalists, through Marine Le Pen, win on May 26, it would be serious for our finances, it would be serious for the stability of the euro,” Le Maire said on a Sunday talk show on BFM television.

“It will be serious for all economic and industrial policies that we have launched,” the minister said.

Countries in a “fragile” euro zone needed to take extra steps to support the single currency, including measures addressing its budget, banking and capital market unions.

“These decisions are hard to make. If we do not take them, it is the euro that risks being threatened,” he said.

Reporting by Simon Carraud and Bate Felix; Editing by Raissa Kasolowsky

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