July 2, 2019 / 7:04 PM / 15 days ago

France's Macron says EU nominations positive for Europe

French President Emmanuel Macron attends a WWII ceremony to mark the 79th anniversary of late French General Charles de Gaulle's resistance call from London of June 18, 1940, at the Mont Valerien memorial, in Suresnes, near Paris, France, June 18, 2019. Thibault Camus/Pool via REUTERS

PARIS (Reuters) - French President Emmanuel Macron said on Tuesday that the nominations for the European Union’s top posts were “positive and consensual” and offered a fresh start for the bloc.

“This accord is the fruit of a deep Franco-German entente,” Macron told a news conference.

Macron defended the decision to appoint German Defence Minister Ursula von der Leyen to head up the Commission and IMF chief Christine Lagarde as the new European Central Bank governor.

“Von Der Leyen is a very good candidate and a very good choice to head the European Commission,” told journalists.

“I energetically backed her candidature. She was not the initial German choice...but I think she is a very good candidate because she has the experience and required competence. She is a has been a minister for several years,” Macron said.

Macron said the new European team with two women and two men, are personalities who have a strong engagement toward Europe.

“The capacities and competences of Madame Lagarde totally qualifies her to preside the European Central Bank,” he said, adding that her experience at the International Monetary Fund during the financial crisis gives her credibility to face the markets.

Reporting by Jean-Baptiste Vey; writing by John Irish; editing by Bate Felix

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