France's President Macron appoints cabinet with figures from the left and right

New French President Emmanuel Macron waves to supporters after a ceremony at the Arc of Triomphe following his formal inauguration ceremony as French President Sunday

France's President Macron appoints cabinet with figures from the left and right

Former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi has described Emmanuel Macron as a "good-looking lad with a with a good-looking mum", in an apparent dig at the age gap between the newly elected French president and his wife, Brigitte. Macron named a mix of prominent and unknown figu.

A large group of onlookers, some carrying European flags, stood outside the chancellery as Macron arrived.

Amid deep-seated suspicions that Mr Trump would have preferred Mr Macron's far-right rival Marine Le Pen to emerge victorious from last week's election, senior USA administration officials told AFP that Mr Trump will meet Mr Macron on 25 May in Brussels and "compare perspectives".

Le Drian is expected to be the only survivor from Francois Hollande's little-loved Socialist government. Some media have dubbed the pair "Merkron" - a reference to the "Merkozy" moniker used for Merkel and Nicolas Sarkozy, France's conservative leader from 2007-12.

Merkel called for "new dynamism" in the countries' relationship. Since January 2015, she led Business France, a public agency in charge of promoting French companies overseas and attracting foreign investments.

Germany is looking to Macron to revitalize France as an economic power and political heavyweight in an European Union facing complex divorce proceedings with Britain.

When Britain leaves the bloc in 2019, France will be the EU's only member with nuclear weapons and a permanent seat on the UN Security Council.

Macron made clear his determination to tackle his country's problems.

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Macron also declared there needs to be "a Europe that protects our citizens better".

The fervently pro-European Macron also said he would help rebuild the flagging European Union. The outcome of the vote will determine whether he is able to pursue his ambitious agenda.

Nothing should stand in the way, even at this late stage, of maximising left forces' success in next month's general election first round to weaken the positions of both the neoliberal and far-right camps.

The Republican Party, sent out a statement calling the cabinet "confusing". Philippe quit that cause when Fillon's campaign was hit by a financial scandal over publicly funded jobs for members of his family.

His choice of 46-year-old Philippe for prime minister was seen as a strategic pick by Macron, who is trying to woo modernizers of all stripes to his side. As such he will be charged with keeping Macron's promises of improving the governance within the currency club and closing the competitive gap that has left France behind its peers in terms of growth and employment. Outgoing president Hollande's Socialist Party is extremely unpopular, and the Republicans are likely to make big gains in the parliamentary elections.

READ ALSO: Why is Macron naming government now and not after June's elections?

The pair now at the center of the European project vowed to give it new impetus, saying they were ready to change treaties if necessary.

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